Rectal microbicides and the fight against HIV/AIDS among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Nigeria
Issues: Culture, traditional and religious beliefs prohibits same sex practice in Nigeria, and those engaged in them are seen as evil and as such are highly stigmatized and discriminated against. Some of this stigma could translate into physical attack. The result of this is the increase in STIs and HIV/AIDS and hindered access to health care services and treatment options.
Description: The coming of new prevention technologies like the rectal microbicides is a welcome development in the fight against STIs and HIV/AIDS among this group. YOUTH-CHILD SUPPORT INITIATIVE an NGO in Enugu, Nigeria, working with MSM groups with 50 registered gay men in its programme for peer educators. Through various focus group discussion held,the result is as follows:45 believes that HIV/AIDS cannot be contracted through anal sex, all admitted to have had anal sex.Low negotiating power and skill for condom use among receptive partners, general unwillingness to use condoms as they see it as a barrier to intimacy. Again high prevalence of STIs like anal warts, syphilis and gonorrhea, there is no fear of pregnancy. Finally only 7 had good knowledge of HIV/AIDS. Incase of infection the only option is self medication. The introduction of rectal microbicides will offer protection in the absence of condoms as well as give back-up protection when condoms are used.
Lessons learned: due to stigma and discrimination of MSM ,the spread of HIV/AIDS among them will increase as well as in the heterosexual population through bi-sexual men. The acceleration of research and development of rectal microbicides and the active involvement of msm in microbicides advocacy will prove a worthy effort in the fight against HIV/AIDS
Recoomendations:The vulnerability of MSM group makes rectal microbicides a must have prevention technology if we are to fight HIV/AIDS in its entirety.
AIDS 2006 - XVI International AIDS Conference
"G.O.Eki, et al.
Rectal microbicides and the fight against HIV/AIDS among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Nigeria.
AIDS 2006 - XVI International AIDS Conference: