“That’s Only for Women”: The Importance of Educating HIV-Positive Sexual Minority Men on HPV and High Resolution Anoscopy (HRA)

Catherine Finneran, Jason Johnson Peretz, Danielle Blemur, Joel Palefsky, Lisa Flowers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) experience disproportionately high burdens of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)-associated anal cancers. Recent focus has shifted to anorectal cancer prevention through high-resolution anoscopy (HRA); however, little is known about sexual minority men’s perceptions, attitudes, or beliefs regarding HRA. We conducted 4 qualitative Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) (n = 15) with sexual minority men, focusing on their beliefs, attitudes, and perceptions of undergoing HRA. Participants discussed their experiences of HPV/HRA as influenced by both their gender and sexuality, including unawareness of HPV disease as a male health issue, challenges relating to female-oriented HPV/HRA language, conception of HPV/HRA as related to prostate health, and connecting their sexual behavior identification as “bottoms” to their need for HRA. As efforts to improve HRA knowledge, access, and uptake among sexual and gender minority communities increase, special attention should be paid to language and messaging choices around HRA.

Keywords

  • HIV
  • HPV
  • HRA
  • MSM
  • anoscopy
  • attitutdes
  • high-resolution
  • human immunodeficiency virus
  • human papillomavirus
  • knowledge
  • sexual health
  • sexual minority

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