Recent research has found that almost half the gay men with HIV in Australia report having multiple sexual problems. These range from difficulty getting an erection and ejaculating through to a loss of libido and performance anxiety.
‘Rates of self-reported sexual problems are high among gay men in Australia,’ write the investigators. They also add that ‘gay men with HIV are more likely to experience sexual problems than those without HIV.’
With the exception of major depression, the factors associated with multiple sexual problems also differ between the two groups. For positive men, using antidepressants, poor coping strategies and having had casual unprotected sex are significant causes. For negative men, the significant factors are poor general health and a lack of social support.
This research is the first of its kind to look into this area with such depth and promises to advance the understanding and management of sexual problems in the community.