Abstract

To explore demographic, behavioral and psychosocial risk factors for HIV infection in South African MSM we recruited 480 MSM (aged 18 and 44 years) using respondent-driven sampling. Data were collected through individual computer-assisted face-to-face interviews. Participants were tested for HIV. RDS-adjusted HIV prevalence is 30.1 % (unadjusted 35.6 %). Few participants had ever engaged in both receptive and insertive anal sex; sex with women was frequently reported. Independent demographic and behavioral correlates of HIV infection include age, education, number of male sexual partners, ever having been forced to have sex, and ever having engaged in transactional sex; engagement in sex with women was a protective factor. Psychosocial risk factors independently associated with HIV infection were feminine identification, internalized homophobia, and hazardous drinking. Our findings confirm what has been found in other studies, but also suggest that the dynamics and context of sexual transmission among MSM in South Africa differ from those among MSM in Western countries.