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Application of syndemic theory to black men who have sex with men in the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study

Dyer, TP and Shoptaw, S and Guadamuz, TE and Plankey, M and Kao, U and Ostrow, D and Chmiel, JS and Herrick, A and Stall, R (2012) Application of syndemic theory to black men who have sex with men in the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study. Journal of Urban Health, 89 (4). 697 - 708. ISSN 1099-3460

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This study analyzed data from a large prospective epidemiologic cohort study among men who have sex with men (MSM), the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study, to assess syndemic relationships among Black MSM in the cohort (N=301). We hypothesized that multiple interconnections among psychosocial health conditions would be found among these men, defining syndemic conditions. Constituents of syndemic conditions measured included reported depression symptoms, sexual compulsiveness, substance use, intimate partner violence (IPV), and stress. We found significant evidence of syndemics among these Black men: depression symptoms were independently associated with sexual compulsiveness (odds ratios [OR]: 1.88, 95% CI=1.1, 3.3) and stress (OR: 2.67, 95% CI=1.5, 4.7); sexual compulsiveness was independently associated with stress (OR: 2.04, 95% CI=1.2, 3.5); substance misuse was independently associated with IPV (OR: 2.57, 95% CI=1.4, 4.8); stress independently was associated with depression symptoms (OR: 2.67, 95% CI=1.5, 4.7), sexual compulsiveness (OR: 2.04, 95% CI=1.2, 3.5) and IPV (OR: 2.84, 95% CI=1.6, 4.9). Moreover,men who reported higher numbers of syndemic constituents (three or more conditions) reportedly engaged in more unprotected anal intercourse compared to men who had two or fewer health conditions (OR: 3.46, 95% CI=1.4-8.3). Findings support the concept of syndemics in Black MSM and suggest that syndemic theory may help explain complexities that sustain HIV-related sexual transmission behaviors in this group. © 2012 The New York Academy of Medicine.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Dyer, TP
Shoptaw, S
Guadamuz, TEteg10@pitt.eduTEG10
Plankey, M
Kao, U
Ostrow, D
Chmiel, JS
Herrick, Aalh75@pitt.eduALH75
Stall, Rrstall@pitt.eduRSTALL
Centers: Other Centers, Institutes, Offices, or Units > Center for LGBT Health Research
Date: 1 August 2012
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Urban Health
Volume: 89
Number: 4
Page Range: 697 - 708
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1007/s11524-012-9674-x
Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1099-3460
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2013 20:59
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2019 05:55


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