AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 381–389

Reported Physical and Sexual Abuse in Childhood and Adult HIV Risk Behaviour in Three African Countries: Findings from Project Accept (HPTN-043)

  • Linda Richter
  • Arnošt Komárek
  • Chris Desmond
  • David Celentano
  • Steve Morin
  • Michael Sweat
  • Suwat Chariyalertsak
  • Alfred Chingono
  • Glenda Gray
  • Jessie Mbwambo
  • Tom Coates
Original Paper

Abstract

Childhood sexual and physical abuse have been linked to adolescent and adult risky sexual behaviors, including early sexual debut, an increased number of sexual partners, unprotected sex, alcohol and drug use during sex and sexual violence. This paper explores these relationships among both men and women who report histories of childhood abuse from representative samples of communities in three countries in southern and eastern Africa (South Africa, Zimbabwe and Tanzania). Data were collected as part of a 3-year randomized community trial to rapidly increase knowledge of HIV status and to promote community responses through mobilisation, mobile testing, provision of same-day HIV test results and post-test support for HIV. The results indicate that reported childhood sexual and physical abuse is high in all three settings, also among men, and shows strong relationships with a range of sexual risk behaviors, including age at first sex (OR −0.6 (CI: −0.9, −0.4, p < 0.003)—among men, OR −0.7 (CI: −0.9, −0.5, p < 0.001)—among women), alcohol (OR 1.43 (CI: 1.22, 1.68, p < 0.001)—men, OR 1.83 (CI: 1.50, 2.24, p < 0.001)—women) and drug use (OR 1.65 (CI: 1.38, 1.97, p < 0.001)—men, OR 3.14 (CI: 1.95, 5.05, p < 0.001)—women) and two forms of partner violence—recent forced sex (OR 2.22 (CI: 1.66, 2.95, p < 0.001)—men, OR 2.76 (CI: 2.09, 3.64, p < 0.001)—women) and ever being hurt by a partner (OR 3.88 (CI: 2.84, 5.29, p < 0.001)—men, OR 3.06 (CI: 2.48, 3.76, p < 0.001)—women). Individuals abused in childhood comprise between 6 and 29 % of young adult men and women living in these African settings and constitute a population at high risk of HIV infection.

Keywords

Child Sexual abuse Physical abuse HIV Risk behavior 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda Richter
    • 1
    • 2
  • Arnošt Komárek
    • 3
  • Chris Desmond
    • 1
    • 2
  • David Celentano
    • 4
  • Steve Morin
    • 5
  • Michael Sweat
    • 6
  • Suwat Chariyalertsak
    • 7
  • Alfred Chingono
    • 8
  • Glenda Gray
    • 9
  • Jessie Mbwambo
    • 10
  • Tom Coates
    • 11
  1. 1.HIV/AIDS, STIs and TB ProgrammeHuman Sciences Research CouncilDurbanSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of PaediatricsUniversity of the WitwatersrandJohannesburgSouth Africa
  3. 3.Department of Probability and Mathematical Statistics, Faculty of Mathematics and PhysicsCharles UniversityPragueCzech Republic
  4. 4.Department of EpidemiologyJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  5. 5.Department of Medicine, Center for AIDS Prevention StudiesUniversity of CaliforniaSan FranciscoUSA
  6. 6.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesMedical University of South CarolinaCharlestonUSA
  7. 7.Research Institute for Health Sciences and Faculty of MedicineChiang Mai UniversityChiang MaiThailand
  8. 8.Department of Psychiatry, College of Health SciencesUniversity of ZimbabweHarareZimbabwe
  9. 9.Perinatal HIV Research UnitUniversity of the WitswatersrandJohannesburgSouth Africa
  10. 10.Department of PsychiatryMuhimbili University of Health and Allied SciencesDar es SalaamTanzania
  11. 11.Department of MedicineUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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