Journal Article

Masculine gender ideologies, intimate partner violence, and alcohol use increase risk for genital tract infections among men

Masculine gender ideologies are thought to underlie alcohol use, intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration, and sexual risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). We extend on studies in the Indian context by examining the roles of masculine gender ideologies, alcohol use, and IPV on three outcomes of HIV risk (condom use, genital tract infection [GTI] symptoms, and GTI diagnosis). We applied logistic regression models to cross-sectional data of men and their wives in rural Maharashtra, India (n = 1,080 couples). We found that men with less masculine gender ideologies demonstrated greater odds of condom use (i.e., lower odds no condom use, odds ratio [OR] = 0.96, 95% confidence interval [CI] = [0.93, 0.98]). IPV perpetration was associated with increased odds of reporting ≥1 GTI symptom (adjusted OR [AOR] = 1.56, 95% CI = [1.07, 2.26]) and decreased GTI diagnosis (AOR = 0.28, 95% CI = [0.08, 0.97]). Moderate alcohol consumption was associated with increased odds of reporting ≥1 GTI symptom (AOR = 1.51, 95% CI = [1.01, 2.25]). Our findings have direct implications for men’s and women’s health in rural India, including targeted GTI diagnosis and treatment, integrated violence prevention in STI clinics, and targeted intervention on masculine gender ideologies.