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HIV prevalence correlated with circumcision prevalence and high-risk sexual behavior in India's states: an ecological study
Authors: Chris R. Kenyon
Source: F1000 Research, 8: 60; DOI: 10.12688/f1000research.17807.2
Topic(s): Circumcision
Sexual behavior
Country: Asia
Published: JUN 2019
Abstract: HIV prevalence varies between 0% and 1.6% in India's states. The factors underpinning this variation are poorly defined. Methods: We evaluated the relationship between HIV prevalence by state and a range of risk factors in the Indian 2015 National Family Health Survey. Pearson’s correlation was used to assess the relationship between HIV prevalence and each variable. The prevalence of each risk factor was compared between five high-HIV-prevalence states (>1% prevalence) and a large low-HIV-prevalence state (Uttar Pradesh; HIV prevalence, 0.06%). Results: There was an association between HIV prevalence and men's mean lifetime number of partners (r = 0.55; P = 0.001) and men reporting sex with a non-married, non-cohabiting partner (r = 0.40; P = 0.014). In general, men in high-prevalence states were less likely to be circumcised and (with the exception of Chandigarh) use condoms at last sex. In two high prevalence states (Mizoram and Nagaland), men reported a higher number of lifetime partners and a higher prevalence of multiple partners and high-risk sex in the past year. Conclusions: Variation in circumcision prevalence and sexual behavior may contribute to the large variations in HIV prevalence by state in India.