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Sex Transm Infect. 2012 Jun;88(4):288-93. doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2011-050276. Epub 2012 Feb 11.

High prevalence of HIV and sexually transmitted infections among male sex workers in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire: need for services tailored to their needs.

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  • 1Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nationalestraat 155, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium.



To assess condom use and prevalence of sexually transmitted infections (STI) and HIV among male sex workers (MSW) in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire.


A cross-sectional survey was conducted between October 2007 and January 2008 among MSW attending a sex worker clinic in Abidjan. A short questionnaire was administered in a face-to-face interview, and the participants were asked to provide a urine sample for STI testing and to self-collect transudate of the gingival mucosa for anonymous HIV testing, using a rapid test. A rectal swab for STI testing was taken by a physician. Molecular amplification assays were performed for the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Trichomonas vaginalis.


96 MSW participated in the survey, their median age was 27 years and the median duration of sex work was 5 years. Consistent condom use with clients during the last working day was 86.0%, and consistent condom use with the regular partner during the last week was 81.6%. HIV infection was detected in 50.0% of the participants. The prevalence of N gonorrhoeae was 12.8%, chlamydia infection was present in 3.2% and T vaginalis in 2.1% of the study participants.


HIV and STI rates found in this study confirm the high risk and vulnerability status of MSW in Côte d'Ivoire. There is a definite need for studies exploring risk and risk perceptions among MSW in more depth and for services tailored to their needs, including developing and validating simple algorithms for the diagnosis of STI in MSW and men who have sex with men.

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