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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 77-83

Assessment of sexual behavior and serostatus disclosure among people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHAs) attending antiretroviral therapy center in tertiary care Hospital, Baroda

1 Department of Community Medicine, GMERS Medical College, Gotri, Gujarat, India
2 Department of Community Medicine,Government Medical College, Baroda, Gujarat, India

Correspondence Address:
Kedar G Mehta
Department of Community Medicine, GMERS Medical College Gotri, Baroda, Gujarat
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2321-9157 .126636

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Introduction: As more and more people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) live longer and enjoy healthier lives because of antiretroviral therapy, there are an increasing number of sexual transmissions of HIV. It is exceedingly important to assess the proportion of unsafe sexual practices among people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHAs) and their disclosure status so that behavioral intervention can be designed optimally for them in order to curb secondary HIV transmission and potential reinfection with different or drug resistant strain of HIV. Aim: To assess sexual behavior and serostatus disclosure of PLWHAs attending antiretroviral therapy (ART) center in Vadodara. Settings and Design: The current cross-sectional study was carried out at ART center of a tertiary care hospital - Shree Sayaji General (SSG) Hospital, Vadodara after taking necessary permissions and approval from institutional review board (IRB). Materials and Methods: A semistructured questionnaire was used for interview with PLWHA who are on ART after taking written and informed consent. Data was entered and analyzed using Epi Info software. Results: A total of 175 PLWHAs were enrolled in this study. Forty-three percent of the PLWHAs practiced premarital sex, while 15% of them practiced extramarital sex (EMS). Nearly 90% of these sexual practices were unsafe. Fifty-eight percent of the PLWHAs continued these unsafe sexual practices even after HIV diagnosis. Nearly 20% of the PLWHAs did not receive any counseling regarding sexual behavior. Ninety-five percent of respondents had disclosed their serostatus to their spouse. Conclusions: Still a remarkable proportion of PLWHAs indulge in unsafe sexual practices and the most common reason encountered among them was desire for child. Although majority of the participants had disclosed their serostatus to their spouse, many respondents did not mention their serostatus to other sexual partners. There is a need to stress on the importance of safe sex among PLWHAs not only to prevent transmission to their partners, but also to help them avoid receiving potentially resistant HIV strains in case of seroconcordant couples. A need-based sexual behavior-related motivational counseling needs to be focused on.

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