Increasing trend of HIV seropositivity among commercial sex workers attending the Voluntary and Confidential Counseling and Testing Centre in Manipur, India


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Abstract

A total of 1903 commercial sex workers (CSWs) attending the Voluntary and Confidential Counseling and Testing Centre at the Department of Microbiology, Regional Institute of Medical Sciences, Manipur, were screened for HIV infection over a period of five years from March 1998 to February 2003. All cases were in the age group 13–55 years. Most cases were in the age group 20–30 years (50.86%). Out of 1903 CSWs, 304 were found to be HIV-seropositive, confirmed by three tests (ELISA/RAPID/SIMPLE) of different biological antigen principles according to India's National AIDS Control Organisation guidelines. The annual rising trend in incidence of HIV seropositivity among CSWs from March 1998 (10.93%) to February 2003 (29.68%) was observed in the test site attenders, in contrast to the declining trend among injecting drug users in the state from March 1998 (76%) to February 2003 (59.82%). In all, 622 sexually transmitted infection (STI) cases were diagnosed, of which 242 (38.90%) had syphilis, which was the commonest STI, and 172 (27.65%) had ulcerative lesions. Increasing HIV seropositivity among CSWs observed in this study reflects the changing pattern of HIV transmission in Manipur.

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