Potential bridges for HIV infection to men who have sex with men in Guangzhou, China.AIDS Behav. 2006 Jul; 10(4 Suppl):S17-23.AB
To assess the potential for HIV acquisition among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Guangzhou, China, we conducted a cross-sectional, anonymous, face-to-face survey of MSM in the metropolitan area of Guangzhou, China. As a pilot recruitment for a cohort study, participants were recruited by convenience sampling through newspaper and television advertising, website information, and respondent referral. Blood samples were tested for HIV, hepatitis B (HBV), hepatitis C (HCV), and syphilis. Client-centered HIV and STD counseling was provided.A total of 201 MSM were interviewed and 200 blood samples were tested. The prevalence of HIV antibody was 0% (97.5% CI 0-1.8%); 17.5% of MSM were HBV surface antigen positive; 1.0% had HCV antibodies; 10.5% had antibodies to syphilis. Syphilis seropositivity was associated with sex with a foreign MSM in the last six months and 10.4% reported sex with a foreign MSM overall. The majority (54.7%) reported unprotected anal sex with other men. Nearly one-third (31.8%) had regular female partners; 25.9% were currently married to a woman; 6% had casual female partners; 4.5% had sex with a female sex worker; 4.5% had sex with a male sex worker; and 12.9% had unprotected vaginal sex and unprotected anal sex with a man in the past six months. Only one MSM reported injection drug use (0.5%). The currently low prevalence of HIV but high level of unprotected anal sex, high prevalence of syphilis infection, and sexual networks that include foreign MSM point to a transient window for HIV prevention among MSM in Guangzhou. We recognize challenges to recruiting a representative sample of MSM and retaining them in longitudinal cohort studies.