MSM May Underestimate HIV Risk


New study findings suggest that more at-risk individuals should take pre-exposure prophylaxis to prevent HIV.

Although researchers continue to make great strides in the fight against HIV, there are still many obstacles to overcome in terms of prevention. One such obstacle is accurate HIV risk perception among men who have sex with men (MSM), a population that accounts for 70% of new HIV infections in the United States.

In an oral abstract session at the 25th Conference for Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) held in Boston, Massachusetts, Jill Blumenthal, MD, associate clinical professor at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, discussed how inaccurate HIV risk perception by MSM remains an obstacle to prevention, despite greater access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).

To address this issue, Dr. Blumenthal and her team studied whether or not providing information on their risk of contracting HIV to MSM would increase their uptake of PrEP. The team tested this hypothesis in a randomized controlled trial dubbed, PrEP Accessibility Research and Evaluation 2, or PrEPARE2, which enrolled 171 MSM participants, all recruited from HIV testing sites.

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