Self-Identified Sexual Orientation and Sexual Risk Behavior Among HIV-Infected Latino Males

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Abstract

The HIV testing, disclosure, and sexual practices of ethnic minority men suggest that addressing sexual risk behavior and the underlying reasons for not receiving HIV testing or disclosing HIV-infection status–unique to differing populations–would improve public health interventions. Descriptive behaviors and underlying perspectives reported in our study suggest that public health interventions for HIV-infected Latino men who self-identify as heterosexual should explicitly identify substance use, needle sharing, and unprotected sex to current partners as behaviors placing both oneself and one's partners at high risk for contracting HIV. However, diversity of sexual behavior among gay, straight, and bisexual HIV-infected Latino men in our study ultimately suggested that clinicians should not rely on simplistic conceptions of sexuality in assessment of self-care needs. Care in presentation and discussion of self-identified sexual preference and sexual behavior is indicated, as these do not determine actual sexual orientation or behavior and vice versa.

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