High risks of HIV transmission for men sex worker — a comparison of profile and risk factors of HIV infection between MSM and MSW in China

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Background: Although men who have sex with men (MSM) and male sex workers (MSWs) both represent the high-risk groups for the transmission of HIV/AIDS and syphilis, the comparison between them have not yet been well studied in China. We aimed to evaluate the prevalence of HIV among MSM and MSW, and then identify the difference of risk factors of HIV infection. Methods: A snowball sampling was employed to recruit patrons attending the Tianjin bathhouse from March 2011 to October 2018. A questionnaire covering sociodemographic characteristics, sexual behaviors, HIV-related and HIV awareness was completed by 5166 patrons from all parts of China. Bivariate analyses were done using the Chi-square test to investigate the association between factors and HIV infection among MSM and MSWs. Subsequently, we studied the different impact of risk factors on HIV infections among the two groups using multiple logistic regression with the adjusted odds ratio (aOR) being derived. Results: From 2011 to 2018, 235 MSWs and 4931 MSM were included into our study. HIV prevalence among the MSWs was 17.8% (95%CI: 13.2% ~ 23.4%) while 6.5% (95%CI: 5.8% ~ 7.2%) for MSM (P < 0.01). MSWs tends to be younger (26.50% in MSWs vs. 8.64% in MSM, P < 0.05), live alone (84.68% in MSWs vs. 47.98 in MSM, P < 0.05), get poor education (41.28% in MSWs vs. 28.45 in MSM, P < 0.05), use drug (8.09% in MSWs vs. 0.89% in MSM, P < 0.05), have more proportion of always use condom during anal sex (56.50% in MSWs vs. 41.95% in MSM, P < 0.05) but less proportion during commercial sex (81.28% in MSWs vs. 98.48% in MSM, P < 0.05), access HIV-related health services (65.96% in MSWs vs. 47.80% in MSM, P < 0.05) and have a HIV test last year(60.85% in MSWs vs. 41.27% in MSM, P < 0.05). The significant associations between risk factors with HIV infection in MSM were not observed in MSWs and vice versa. Conclusions: High HIV prevalence needs urgent intervention targeting MSWs as a higher susceptible to HIV in comparison to MSM owing to their unique characteristics. The discrepancies of profiles and risk factors between MSM and MSWs should be consider in design and development of strategies.




Yu, M., Song, D., Zhang, T., Yao, T., Chen, Y., Liu, Y., … Cui, Z. (2022). High risks of HIV transmission for men sex worker — a comparison of profile and risk factors of HIV infection between MSM and MSW in China. BMC Public Health, 22(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-022-13264-z

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