HIV serosorting as a harm reduction strategy, USA.
Article Type: Brief article
Subject: HIV infection (Prevention)
HIV infection (Demographic aspects)
Gay men (Sexual behavior)
Pub Date: 05/01/2010
Publication: Name: Reproductive Health Matters Publisher: Reproductive Health Matters Audience: General Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Family and marriage; Health; Women's issues/gender studies Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2010 Reproductive Health Matters ISSN: 0968-8080
Issue: Date: May, 2010 Source Volume: 18 Source Issue: 35
Geographic: Geographic Scope: Washington Geographic Code: 1U9WA Washington
Accession Number: 236247764
Full Text: Men who have sex with men (MSM) have dramatically changed their sexual behaviour in response to HIV, partly by preferentially selecting sex partners with concordant HIV status and preferentially using condoms with partners of discordant status--a practice termed serosorting. A mathematical model of HIV transmission dynamics with data from a 2003 study of 400 MSM in Seattle, Washington, showed that predicted population-level HIV prevalence as well as an individual's risk of acquiring HIV decreases when the odds of serosorting are increased. In the model, based on observed levels of serosorting, an HIV prevalence of 16% was predicted. If serosorting were eliminated, the HIV prevalence would increase to 24.5%. Findings depend on rates of condom use, mean anal sex contact rates, and HIV testing in the population. Under realistic scenarios of sexual behaviour and testing frequency for MSM, serosorting can be an effective harm reduction strategy. However, it is still more risky for an HIV-negative man to have unprotected anal intercourse with another apparently HIV-negative man than to use condoms consistently. (1)

(1.) Cassels S, Menza TW, Goodreau SM, et al. HIV serosorting as a harm reduction strategy: evidence from Seattle, Washington. AIDS 2009;23(18): 2497-506.
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2010 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.