AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 263–270

Perceptions of Lifetime Risk and Actual Risk for Acquiring HIV Among Young Men Who Have Sex with Men

Authors

    • Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention-Surveillance and EpidemiologyNational Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Linda A. Valleroy
    • Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention-Surveillance and EpidemiologyNational Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Gina M. Secura
    • St. Louis University School of Public Health
  • Stephanie Behel
    • Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention-Surveillance and EpidemiologyNational Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Trista Bingham
    • Los Angeles County Department of Health Services
  • David D. Celentano
    • Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health
  • Beryl A. Koblin
    • The New York Blood Center
  • Marlene LaLota
    • Florida Department of Health
  • Douglas Shehan
    • University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
  • Hanne Thiede
    • Public Health—Seattle & King County
  • Lucia V. Torian
    • New York City Department of Health
  • for the Young Men’s Survey Study Group
Brief Communication

DOI: 10.1007/s10461-006-9136-0

Cite this article as:
MacKellar, D.A., Valleroy, L.A., Secura, G.M. et al. AIDS Behav (2007) 11: 263. doi:10.1007/s10461-006-9136-0

Abstract

Among young men who have sex with men (MSM) surveyed in six US cities, we evaluated the magnitude and correlates of perceived lifetime risk for acquiring HIV, and missed opportunities to increase risk perception by providers of health-care and HIV-testing services. Overall, approximately one quarter of young MSM perceived themselves at moderate/high risk for acquiring HIV. Adjusting for demographic, prior testing, and behavioral characteristics, moderate/high perceived risk had the strongest association with unrecognized HIV infection. However, half of the 267 young MSM with unrecognized infection perceived themselves at low lifetime risk for acquiring HIV, and many young MSM with low-risk perception reported considerable risk behaviors. Providers of health-care and HIV-testing services missed opportunities to assess risks and recommend testing for young MSM. To increase HIV testing, prevention providers should intensify efforts to assess, and to increase when needed, perceptions of lifetime risks for acquiring HIV among young MSM.

Keywords

Risk perceptionHIVYoung MSM

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006