Prevalence and correlates of sexual concerns and associated distress among women living with HIV in Canada

Carter, Allison and Gormley, Rebecca and Muchenje, Marvelous and Zhu, Denise and Patterson, Sophie and Kestler, Mary and Hankins, Catherine and Logie, Carmen and Brotto, Lori and Tharao, Wangari and Lee, Melanie and Li, Jenny and Ding, Erin and De Pokomandy, Alexandra and Loutfy, Mona and Kaida, Angela (2022) Prevalence and correlates of sexual concerns and associated distress among women living with HIV in Canada. Women's Health, 18.

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

Objectives: We assessed the prevalence and correlates of sexual concerns and associated distress among women living with HIV in Canada. Methods: We analyzed cross-sectional survey data from the Canadian HIV Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health Cohort Study (2017-2018). Self-identified women living with HIV were asked about sexual concerns post-HIV diagnosis and associated distress (none, mild, moderate, severe). Five areas of concern were assessed, including difficulties related to sexual self-esteem, sexual function, relationships, and emotional and behavioral aspects of sex. Logistic regression analyses identified correlates of reporting any sexual concerns and severe distress about these concerns. Results: Of 906 participants (median age 48, Q1-Q3 = 41-55), 596 (65.8%) reported sexual concerns post-HIV diagnosis. We found a high prevalence of concerns related to relationships (43.3%), sexual self-esteem (49.4%), and emotional aspects of sex (45.4%), relative to sexual functioning (38.4%) and behavioral aspects (33.7%). Of those with sexual concerns, 36.7% reported severe distress. Reports of severe distress were the highest for relationship difficulties (32.5%), relative to other areas of concern (21.4%-22.8%). In adjusted analyses, women reporting sexual dissatisfaction and high HIV-related stigma had significantly higher odds of reporting sexual concerns. Conversely, those reporting higher resilience, better mental health, African, Caribbean, and Black identity, and sex as somewhat unimportant, not at all important, or neutral to their lives had lower adjusted odds. Factors associated with severe distress about sexual concerns included older age, body dissatisfaction, sexual dissatisfaction, and high HIV-related stigma, while better mental health and getting support from someone living with HIV were protective. While 84.4% of women had discussed with a provider how viral load impacts transmission risk, only 40.6% had conversations about sexual wellbeing. Conclusion: More attention to women's sexual wellbeing within social and relational contexts is critical to ensure the sexual rights of women living with HIV are upheld

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Women's Health
Subjects:
ID Code:
166555
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
23 Feb 2022 15:05
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
25 May 2022 09:00