Many Gay Men Would Support 'Home HIV Test':
FRIDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Many gay men who regularly
have risky sex would be willing to ask partners to use a new,
rapid-result HIV test, a new study shows.
HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.
The tests, which use a mouth swab and detect HIV antibodies in
less than 20 minutes, are currently used in testing clinics across
the United States. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval
of the tests for public use is pending, according to the
researchers at the HIV Center at Columbia Psychiatry and the New
York State Psychiatric Institute.
The researchers interviewed 57 gay and bisexual men, aged 18 and
older, who said they had multiple male partners and rarely or never
used condoms. Most of the men said they liked the idea of using the
test kits to screen sexual partners.
The researchers also found that most of the men said they would
likely ask partners to take an HIV test and might consider safe sex
measures if the partner's response raised doubts about his HIV
The study was slated for online publication in February in the
Journal of Sex Research.
The tests do not detect the initial, acute stage of HIV
infection that lasts for a few weeks, but "for men who are already
having a high level of unprotected intercourse with multiple
partners, access to a rapid HIV test that can be performed at home
may prove to be a valuable harm-reduction tool," principal
investigator Alex Carballo-Dieguez, a clinical psychologist, said
in a Columbia news release.
The researchers noted that an HIV home test could also protect
heterosexual people who have risky sex.
The New Mexico AIDS Education and Training Center has more about
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