XIX International AIDS Conference

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MOPE317 - Poster Exhibition


HIV infection, unwanted pregnancy and induced abortion: exploring connections

R. Barbosa1,2, A. Pinho3, W. Villela4, N. Santos2

1University of Campinas, Center for Population Studies, Campinas, Brazil, 2CRT DST/AIDS SP, São Paulo, Brazil, 3PPG-ENSP/FIOCRUZ, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 4UNIFESP, São Paulo, Brazil

Background: Few studies have focused on the relationship between HIV infection and women´s reproductive practices, especially induced abortion. Most results show that seropositivity for HIV in and of itself does not appear to alter the pre-existing reproductive behavior pattern. In order to further understanding the relationship between HIV infection and women´s reproductive practices, we compared results from two studies.
Methods: The first study analyses the factors associated with the HIV infection, and the second, the factors associated with unwanted pregnancy and induced abortion. Both studies used the same group of data. From November 2003 to December 2004, 2,045 women's public health care service users and 1,777 WLHA users of DST/AIDS health services participated in a cross-sectional study conducted in 13 Brazilian municipalities from the five geographic regions of Brazil. The sample size calculation was done using a population HIV seroprevalence estimate per region, with a confidence interval of 95% and two-sided error of 5%.
Results: The results of the adjusted models after multiple logistic regression found that an earlier sexual debut, higher number of sexual partners, and reports of sexual violence were equally associated with HIV infection and with induced abortion. This coincidence opens up the possibility of thinking about how induced abortion and HIV infection among women of reproductive age may be associated with similar contexts of vulnerability.
Conclusions: The study results point to an intimate and complex relationship between HIV infection, unwanted pregnancy, and induced abortion in Brazil. The results indicate that there are similarities between the contexts associated with HIV infection and reproductive practices and decisions. Consequently they should be addressed together by researchers and health services as a way to better understand the reproductive decisions of women living with HIV/AIDs and to provide the support women need, especially in cases of an undesired pregnancy.

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