Journal of
AIDS and HIV Research

  • Abbreviation: J. AIDS HIV Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2359
  • DOI: 10.5897/JAHR
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 283

Full Length Research Paper

Differences in the ability to predict and prepare for sexual activity between HIV-infected and HIV-uninfected young South African Women

Rokhsanna Sadeghi
  • Rokhsanna Sadeghi
  • Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.
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Amina Alio
  • Amina Alio
  • Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.
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Thola Bennie
  • Thola Bennie
  • Desmond Tutu HIV Centre, Institute of Infectious Diseases and Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.
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Melissa Wallace
  • Melissa Wallace
  • Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.
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Shubing Cai
  • Shubing Cai
  • Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.
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Beau Abar
  • Beau Abar
  • Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.
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Linda-Gail Bekker
  • Linda-Gail Bekker
  • Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.
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David Adler
  • David Adler
  • Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA.
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  •  Received: 25 November 2017
  •  Accepted: 08 January 2018
  •  Published: 31 January 2018

Abstract

The Human Research Council’s National HIV Prevalence, Incidence and Behavior Survey ranks South Africa first in HIV incidence in the world with 400,000 new infections in 2012 and found the HIV incidence rate among female youth aged 15 to 24 years to be 2.5% that year. The objective of this study was to compare the pattern and predictability of sexual activity between HIV-infected and HIV- uninfected young South African women. Sexually active young women between the ages of 16 and 21 years old completed a study survey between October 2012 and 2014 at two Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation centers. 100 young women with a mean age of 19.04 years responded to the survey. 51 women (51%) were HIV- infected and 49 were HIV-uninfected (49%). HIV-infected young women were found to be statistically less likely to have a temporal pattern to their sexual activity as compared to HIV-uninfected young women (56.9 vs. 95.9%, p<0.0001). While controlling for frequency of sex and lifetime sexual partners, HIV status remains a significant predictor of having a pattern of sexual activity (OR=16.13, p=0.0004) and a predictor of having sex on the weekend only (OR=4.41, p=0.0022). The ability to predict when sexual activity will occur enables a woman to prepare for its associated risks. HIV-uninfected young women are more likely to have a predictable pattern to their sexual activity as compared to HIV-infected young women. Knowledge of the sexual behavior patterns of this high-risk population will aid in the development of effective HIV prevention campaigns.

Key words: Sexual behavior, HIV, young women, South Africa.