Background Syphilis, one of the oldest diseases caused by the spirochete T. pallidum, has been a major public health problem worldwide. Globally, social inequalities contribute to elevated sexually transmitted infections (STIs) rates among transgender women.High syphilis prevalence has been documented among transgender women in Latin America. Objetives: The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of syphilis and to analyze the potential predictors for this infection in transgender women in Goiânia, Central-West Brazil.
Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted in 180 in transgender women (TGW) in Goiânia-GO, from April 2018 to December 2018. TGW were recruited using respondent-driven sampling (RDS) as a method to obtain a more robust and diverse sample of a hard-to-reach populations, which tends to be particularly sparse and marginalized. After obtaining the consent term, participants were interviewed using a structured form containing questions about sociodemographic characteristics and risk factors for T. pallidum infection. Blood samples were collected and tested for syphilis (anti-T. pallidum) by rapid test.
Results A total of 180 TGW participated in the study. Of the 180 samples tested by the rapid test for syphilis, 61.7.0% (CI 95%: 54.4–68.4%) were positive. In multiple regression analysis, previous STIs (OR aj: 6.2, p≤0.001), age (≤13 years) of sexual initiation (OR aj: 3.6; p = 0.009), number of partners (≥15) in the last seven days (OR aj: 5.3, p≥0.0001) were predictors of syphilis infection.
Conclusion The results of the present study show a high prevalence of syphilis infection in transgender women, with the development of prevention and control strategies, including counseling and testing, as well as the provision of treatment for STIs in the setting street and temporary and/or permanent shelters.
Disclosure No significant relationships.
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