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Author Notes:

E H Koumans, 1600 Clifton Rd, MS E-04, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA, exk0@cdc.gov.

The authors thank the following people for their contributions to this project: Stuart Berman; Jim Braxton; Beverley Campbell; Justin Goforth; Kim Honer; Jamie Krashin; Edward Lake; Manya Magnus; John Marangio; Rachel Robitz; Tom Peterman and James Vellequette.

Authors declared no conflicts of interest.


Research Funding:

The CDC Experience is a one-year fellowship in applied epidemiology at CDC made possible by a public/ private partnership supported by a grant to the CDC Foundation from External Medical Affairs, Pfizer Inc.


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • sexually transmitted infections
  • syphilis
  • Treponema pallidum
  • men who have sex with men
  • MSM
  • behavioural change
  • self-examination
  • health promotion

Examining self and partners for syphilis among men who have sex with men: five US cities, 2009-2011

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Journal Title:

International Journal of STD and AIDS


Volume 23, Number 12


, Pages 859-861

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


To increase self-examination for syphilis among men who have sex with men (MSM), we developed educational materials to increase knowledge of primary and secondary syphilis manifestations. Materials were piloted in five cities' infectious disease or MSM clinics. Self- and partner-examination behaviour was assessed with an anonymous questionnaire. Of 1459 participants, 914 men had had sex with a man in the previous three months; the 171 MSM who reported having read the materials were significantly more likely to examine themselves (anus, adjusted prevalence ratio [aPR] 1.3, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.15-1.52), mouth, penis and skin, and their partners' anus (aPR 1.3, 95% CI 1.03-1.73) and mouth (aPR 1.6, 95% CI 1.1-2.26). Further research is needed to determine whether educational materials affect early detection and treatment of primary and secondary syphilis and reduce transmission.

Copyright information:

© SAGE Publications Ltd, 2012.

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