American Journal of Public Health Vol. 101; No. 10: P. e18-e23
The authors of the current study compared the social network
characteristics of African-American men who have sex with men
only (MSMO) with the social network characteristics of
African-American men who have sex with men and women (MSMW).
The study's participants were African-American men who have
sex with men (n=234) who completed a baseline social network
assessment for a pilot behavioral HIV prevention intervention
in Baltimore from 2006 to 2009. The researchers surveyed the
men to elicit the characteristics of their social networks.
Logistic regression models were used to assess differences in
The results showed that MSMO were significantly more likely
than were MSMW to be HIV-positive (52 percent vs. 31 percent).
"We found no differences between MSMO and MSMW in the size of
kin networks or emotional and material support networks," the
authors wrote. "MSMW had denser sexual networks, reported more
concurrent and exchange partners, used condoms with more
sexual partners and reported interaction with a larger number
of sexual partners at least once a week."
"Although there were many similarities in the social and
sexual network characteristics of MSMO and MSMW, differences
did exist," the team concluded. "HIV prevention interventions
should address the unique needs of African-American MSMW."