(HealthDay News) – More than half of HIV infections in metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), smaller metropolitan areas, and nonmetropolitan areas in the United States and Puerto Rico can be attributed to male–to–male sexual contact, according to research published in the Nov. 30 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Hollie Clark, MPH, from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues estimated the number of HIV infections in newly diagnosed individuals in 2010 and classified them by transmission category and location. The authors focused on geographic differences in the prevalence of HIV infection from male-to-male sexual contact among individuals age >13 years in the United States and Puerto Rico.
The authors note that the largest percentage of HIV infections in MSAs, smaller metropolitan areas, and nonmetropolitan areas can be attributed to male–to–male sexual contact (62.1%, 56.1%, and 53.7%, respectively). Of the cases of HIV infection due to male-to-male sexual contact (28,851 cases), 81.7% were in MSAs, 48.4% of which resided in seven MSAs that represented 31.7% of the total population of individuals aged >13 years.
“The results of this analysis underscore the uneven geographic distribution of the burden of HIV infection in MSAs in the United States and Puerto Rico,” write the authors of an editorial note. “The geographic disparity in HIV burden also indicates a need to target men who have sex with men who bear a large percentage of the burden of infection in areas where persons are at greatest risk for HIV transmission.”