Original Research

Risk factors for sexually transmitted infections among men who have sex with men

Matshidiso A. Malefo, Olalekan Ayo-Yusuf, Mathildah M. Mokgatle
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 15, No 1 | a4080 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v15i1.4080 | © 2023 Matshidiso A. Malefo, Olalekan Ayo-Yusuf, Mathildah M. Mokgatle | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 11 March 2023 | Published: 17 October 2023

About the author(s)

Matshidiso A. Malefo, School of Health Care Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, Pretoria, South Africa
Olalekan Ayo-Yusuf, School of Health Systems and Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Mathildah M. Mokgatle, School of Health Care Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, Pretoria, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are a global public health concern and sub-Saharan Africa, has limited data on STIs in the men who have sex with men (MSM) population. Syndromic management has controversies for treating asymptomatic STIs (ASTIs).

Aim: The aim of this study was to describe the risk factors for STIs among MSM.

Setting: This study was conducted in Tshwane North, Gauteng Province in South Africa.

Methods: A cross-sectional quantitative design was employed using structured questionnaires, rapid plasma reagent test, from December 2021 to May 2022. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used for statistical analysis.

Results: A total of 200 MSM with the mean age of 27.6, standard deviations: 6.8 participated, and STIs prevalence was 66%, with 37% concurrent infections. Ureaplasma urealyticum was (24%), Mycoplasma hominis (23%), Chlamydia trachomatis (20%), Treponema pallidum (20%) and Neisseria gonorrhoeae (9%). The risk factors for acquisition of STI include having a new partner in the last month (OR = 1.68; CI: 0.98–3.13).

Conclusion: The prevalence of ASTIs is high. Serial and multiple sexual partners are the risk factors.

Contribution: This study contributes to the body of knowledge of the burden of STIs among high-risk population.


Keywords

men who have sex with men; asymptomatic; sexually transmitted infections; risk factors; sexual behaviour; alcohol use; HIV

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 3: Good health and well-being

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