Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 295–306 | Cite as

Sexual Behaviors and Partner-Specific Correlates of Heterosexual Anal Intercourse Among Truck Drivers and Their Wives in South India

  • Tarun Bhatnagar
  • P. Sakthivel Saravanamurthy
  • Roger Detels
Original Paper


It is important to know about patterns of sexual behaviors among married couples in order to develop effective HIV prevention strategies for them. Herein we describe the sexual behaviors, estimate prevalence of anal intercourse (AI) among truck drivers (“truckers”) and their wives, and determine partner-specific demographic and behavioral correlates of AI. We carried out a cluster-sampled cross-sectional survey among 18–49 year-old wives and their trucker husbands in a south Indian district. Data were collected by same-gender research team members with color-coded computer-assisted interviews. We used random intercept logistic regression to identify the independent correlates of AI. Thirteen percent of 475 wives and 467 truckers reported ever having AI with their spouse. Of those who responded, 55 % of 40 wives and 47 % of 36 truckers never used condoms during AI. Of those who responded, 22 of 32 wives and 24 of 32 husbands felt that condoms were unnecessary during AI. Reporting ever having AI was associated with younger age and higher education of both husband and wife. AI reported by wives was associated with having sexual partner(s) other than husband (adjusted OR 8.8 [95 % CI 3.2–24.0]), correctly answering all HIV knowledge items (adjusted OR 4.9 [95 % CI 1.9–12.5]), husband’s sexual debut occurring before marriage (adjusted OR 1.9 [95 % CI 1.0–3.5]), and husband’s high HIV risk perception (adjusted OR 2.5 [95 % CI 1.2–5.4]). AI reported by truckers was associated with having sex with a male or transgender (adjusted OR 4.0 [95 % CI 1.2–13.3]). Reported prevalence of AI was high considering that in India anal sex is non-normative, heavily stigmatized and, criminal. Indian heterosexual mobile populations need to be informed about the greater risk of HIV infection consequent to unprotected AI.


Sexual behavior Heterosexual anal intercourse Truck drivers Wives South India 



This work was supported by UCLA/Fogarty AIDS International Training & Research Program, Grant number D43 TW000013.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tarun Bhatnagar
    • 1
  • P. Sakthivel Saravanamurthy
    • 2
  • Roger Detels
    • 3
  1. 1.National Institute of Epidemiology (ICMR)ChennaiIndia
  2. 2.Independent ResearcherChennaiIndia
  3. 3.Department of EpidemiologyUCLA Fielding School of Public HealthLos AngelesUSA

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