An acceptability study of female-controlled methods of protection against HIV and STDs in south-western Uganda.
ABSTRACT We aimed to assess the acceptability of a variety of formulations of female-controlled methods of protection against HIV and STDs among men and women in south-western Uganda. Pilot interviews were carried out with 50 men and 55 women and 25 focus group discussions (FGDs) were held with 138 women and 42 men. The female condom, foaming tablets, sponge, foam, gel and film were demonstrated to 146 women and 35 of their male partners, who then tried out 2 of the products. They were interviewed 7 times during the course of 5 months. At the end experiences were evaluated during a second series of FGDs. Sixty-five (45%) women completed the trial. The main reasons for non-completion were related to geographical mobility. Product preference after the initial demonstration was similar to that at the end of the trial. The most popular formulations were the sponge (25% of the women), foaming tablets (23%), and the female condom (19%). The foam was of medium popularity (16%). The gel (9%) and film (7%) were least popular. Ten per cent of the women and 14% of the men reported products interfering with sexual enjoyment; 24% of the women and 67% of the men said products increased enjoyment. 'Dry sex' is not popular in this area and increased lubrication was an important determinant of acceptability. Age, level of education and location did have some effect on preference. Although secrecy was a dominant theme in the FGDs, 87% of the women had informed their partners by the end of the trial. The products were generally well received. Female control was an important issue for both sexes. Male attitudes were ambivalent because female ownership of products increased women's control. Although they have clear preferences, women appear to accept the products generally and might use a single available product just as readily if choice was limited, as long as it conforms to general cultural preferences, such as those relating to wet/dry sex.
Article: Acceptability and use of the diaphragm and Replens lubricant gel for HIV prevention in Southern Africa.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The acceptability and use of the diaphragm and lubricant gel were assessed as part of a large randomized controlled trial to determine the effectiveness of the methods in women's HIV acquisition. 2,452 intervention-arm women were enrolled at five Southern African clinics and followed quarterly for 12-24 months. Acceptability and use data were collected by face-to-face interviews at Month 3 and Exit. Participants were "very comfortable" with the physical mechanics of diaphragm use throughout the trial, and approval of the gel consistency, quantity and the applicator was high. At Exit, consistent disclosure of use (AOR 1.97, 95% CI: 1.10-3.55); an overall high diaphragm rating (AOR 1.84, 95% CI: 1.45-2.34) and perception of partner approval (AOR 1.75, 95% CI: 1.35-2.26) were the most significant acceptability factors independently associated with consistent use. Despite being female-initiated, disclosure of use to male partners and his perceived approval of the products were factors significantly associated with their consistent use.AIDS and Behavior 09/2009; 14(3):629-38. · 3.49 Impact Factor
Article: The importance of male partner involvement for women's acceptability and adherence to female-initiated HIV prevention methods in Zimbabwe.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Enlisting male partner involvement is perceived as an important component of women's successful uptake of female-initiated HIV prevention methods. We conducted a longitudinal study among a cohort of 955 Zimbabwean women participating in a clinical trial of the effectiveness of a female-initiated HIV prevention method (the diaphragm and lubricant gel) to: (a) describe the extent to which women involved their male partners in the decision to use the study products, and (b) measure the effect perceived male partner support had on their acceptability and consistent use of these methods. Reported levels of male partner involvement in discussions and decisions regarding: joining the study, study activities, the outcome of HIV/STI test results, and product use were very high. In multivariate analyses, regular disclosure of study product use and partner approval for the diaphragm and gel were significantly associated with women's acceptability and consistent use of the products; an essential component for determining efficacy of investigational prevention methods. These results support the need for more sophisticated measurement of how couples interact to make decisions that impact study participation and investigational product use as well as more rigorous adaptations and evaluations of existing strategies to involve male partners in female-initiated HIV prevention trials.AIDS and Behavior 07/2011; 15(5):959-69. · 3.49 Impact Factor