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Preventive Misconception as a Motivation for Participation and Adherence in Microbicide Trials: Evidence from Female Participants and Male Partners in Malawi and Zimbabwe

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This paper presents empirical data on motivation to join an HIV prevention trial of vaginal microbicide gels in Malawi and Zimbabwe, and participant assumption of a preventive misconception. Interviews were conducted with women participating in the trial and their male partners. Most of the female participants were able to adequately describe basic aspects of the trial design. HIV counseling and testing were primary reasons motivating women’s participation, and male partners’ support of the trial. 29% of women and 20% of men also provided indications of a preventive misconception, attributing gel use and trial participation to avoiding HIV infection.

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Research support for this study was funded by the National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) grant R01HD048330, although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of NICHD. HPTN 035 was funded by the United States National Institutes of Health. The study was designed and implemented by the HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN) and the Microbicide Trials Network (MTN). The HPTN (U01AI046749) has been funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), and National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The MTN (U01AI068633) has been funded by the NIAID, NICHD, and NIMH. ReProtect, Inc., and Endo Pharmaceuticals (formerly Indevus Pharmaceuticals Inc.) supplied the BufferGel and PRO 2000 Gel tested in this study free of charge. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) supported the manufacturing of BufferGel for this study.

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Correspondence to Cynthia Woodsong.

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Woodsong, C., Alleman, P., Musara, P. et al. Preventive Misconception as a Motivation for Participation and Adherence in Microbicide Trials: Evidence from Female Participants and Male Partners in Malawi and Zimbabwe. AIDS Behav 16, 785–790 (2012).

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