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Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015 Jun 1;151:31-7. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.02.040. Epub 2015 Apr 2.

Latent class analysis of substance use among men who have sex with men in Malaysia: Findings from the Asian Internet MSM Sex Survey.

Author information

1
Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA), Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Electronic address: howie.ceria@gmail.com.
2
Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
3
Department of Society and Health and the Center for Health Policy Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Mahidol University, Nakorn Pathom, Thailand.
4
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.
5
Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA), Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Society and Health and the Center for Health Policy Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Mahidol University, Nakorn Pathom, Thailand; Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA; Yale School of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Section of Infectious Diseases, AIDS Program, New Haven, CT, USA.
6
Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA), Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Yale School of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Section of Infectious Diseases, AIDS Program, New Haven, CT, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

High prevalence of substance use among men who have sex with men (MSM) may drive the HIV epidemic in Malaysia but patterns of substance use among Malaysian MSM have not been examined. Our study investigated specific Malaysian MSM risk groups to determine the association between their substance use and sexual risk behaviors.

METHODS:

Data from Malaysian respondents (n=1235) in a large, multinational online survey of Asian MSM in 2010 were used to identify latent classes of substance use. Subsequent covariates were included in a joint model to predict class membership.

RESULTS:

The 3-class model was identified as the best fitting model, which included: (1) 'negligible substance use' for those reporting none or using any substance sparingly; (2) 'soft substance use' for those using poppers, ecstasy and drinking before sex; and (3) 'amphetamine-type stimulant (ATS) use' for those using stimulants (methamphetamine, ecstasy), erectile dysfunction drugs and recreational drug use before sex. Men in the 'ATS use' category were significantly less likely to not know their HIV status (AOR: 0.30, 95%CI: 0.14,0.66), more likely to have had more than 6 male sex partners (AOR: 4.83, 95% CI: 1.92-12.2), to have group sex (AOR:4.07, 95% CI: 2.31-7.15), to report inconsistent condom use (AOR:2.01, 95% CI: 1.12-3.60), to be HIV-infected (AOR:3.92, 95% CI: 1.63-8.42) and to have had any sexually transmitted infections (AOR:3.92, 95% CI:1.70, 9.08), compared to men in the 'negligible substance use' category.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study identified subgroups of Malaysian MSM with distinct substance use patterns and HIV-related risk profiles, which provides implication for targeting HIV prevention in this subpopulation.

KEYWORDS:

HIV prevention; HIV risk; Homosexuality; Malaysia; Substance use

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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