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Anonymous partnerships among MSM and transgender women (TW) recently diagnosed with HIV and other STIs in Lima, Peru: an individual-level and dyad-level analysis
  1. Amaya G Perez-Brumer1,2,
  2. Catherine E Oldenburg3,
  3. Eddy R Segura2,
  4. Jorge Sanchez4,5,
  5. Javier R Lama4,5,
  6. Jesse L Clark2
  1. 1Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health, New York, USA
  2. 2Department of Medicine and Program in Global Health, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, USA
  3. 3Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USA
  4. 4Asociación Civil Impacta Salud y Educación, Lima, Peru
  5. 5Department of Global Health, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
  1. Correspondence to Amaya G Perez-Brumer, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health, 722 West 168th St, New York, NY 10032, USA, agp2133{at}


Objectives Partner notification (PN) following sexually transmitted disease (STI) diagnosis is a key strategy for controlling HIV/STI transmission. Anonymous partnerships are an important barrier to PN and often associated with high-risk sexual behaviour. Limited research has examined the profile of men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women (TW) who engage in anonymous sex. To better understand anonymous partnership practices in Lima, Peru, we assessed participant-level and partnership-level characteristics associated with anonymous sex among a sample of MSM and TW recently diagnosed with HIV/STI.

Methods MSM and TW diagnosed with HIV/STI within the past month completed a cross-sectional survey regarding anticipated PN practices. Participants reported sexual partnership types and characteristics of up to three of their most recent partners. Using a Poisson generalised estimating equation model, we assessed participant-level and partnership-level characteristics associated with anonymous partnerships.

Results Among 395 MSM and TW with HIV/STI, 36.0% reported at least one anonymous sexual partner in the past 3 months (mean of 8.6 anonymous partners per participant; SD 17.0). Of the 971 partnerships reported, 118 (12.2%) were anonymous and the majority (84.8%) were with male partners, followed by 11.0% with female partners and 4.2% with transgender/travesti partners. Partner-level characteristics associated with increased likelihood of having an anonymous partner included female (adjusted prevalence ratio (aPR) 2.28, 95% CI 1.05 to 4.95, p=0.04) or transgender/travesti (aPR 4.03, 95% CI 1.51 to 10.78, p=0.006) partner gender.

Conclusions By assessing both individual-level and dyadic-level factors, these results represent an important step in understanding the complexity of partnership interactions and developing alternative PN strategies for Latin America.

  • MEN
  • HIV

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  • Handling editor Jackie A Cassell

  • Contributors APB and JLC designed data collection tools. ERS, JS, JRL and JLC monitored data collection. APB and CEO wrote the statistical analysis plan, cleaned and analysed the data and drafted and revised the paper. All authors revised the draft paper.

  • Funding APB is supported by Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development T32 HD049339 (PI: C. Nathanson) and the National Institutes of Mental Health R25 MH083620 (PI: T. Flanigan). CEO is supported by a National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease T32AI007535 (PI: G. Seage) and National Institute on Drug Abuse T32 DA0131911 (PI: T. Flanigan). Funding for this project provided by NIMH K23 MH084611 (PI: J. Clark).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval Ethical approval for this study was obtained from the Institutional Review Board at the University of California, Los Angeles (G10-03-036-01) and the Comite de Bioética at Asociación Civil Impacta Salud y Educación (0104-2010-CE).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.