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Safer sex in HIV infected patients in London: practices and risks
  1. Waheed A Khan,
  2. Celia Richardson,
  3. Sundhiya Mandalia,
  4. Simon E Barton
  1. Department of HIV/GUM Medicine, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London

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    Editor,—Recent figures from the Public Health Laboratory Service (PHLS) report1 have shown the largest number ever of new cases of HIV infection (2868 cases) during 2000 in the United Kingdom. The majority of HIV infected individuals attending clinics for their treatment and care will have been counselled and strongly advised to practise safer sex. Specific risks of unsafe sex will be summarised, including the risk of transmission of HIV to their partners, as well as their own risk of acquiring new sexually transmitted infections, and the spectre of multidrug resistant HIV variants.

    The overall effect of such safer sex messages were called into question by Dodds et al2 who recently reported evidence of an increasing incidence of high risk sexual behaviour among homosexual men in London. The accompanying editorial by Grulich3 called for improved data on risk behaviours, specifically in HIV infected individuals. We can present data on this from a questionnaire survey of patients attending the largest HIV outpatient centre in London.

    The questionnaire was distributed to 500 consecutive individuals attending the Kobler HIV outpatient clinic at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital during spring 2000. The …

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