If proven effective, vaginal microbicides and diaphragms will likely be part of a larger HIV prevention model that includes condoms and other prevention strategies. It is, therefore, important to understand how introducing new prevention methods may affect overall patterns of sexual risk behavior. Data presented were collected as part of a safety and feasibility study of ACIDFORM gel with a diaphragm among 120 women in South Africa. Interviews were administered at enrollment and months 1, 3, 5, and 6 of the trial. Focus groups were conducted at trial exit. Frequency of sex increased significantly after enrollment. This increase appears to be owing to perceived protection from HIV and greater sexual pleasure afforded by the gel. Male condom use was high overall but increased significantly from enrollment. Data suggest this is because of increased partner involvement, increased negotiating power afforded by study participation, and provision of free condoms perceived to be of high quality.
AIDS Education and Prevention (2007) 19 (4) 310-320 [doi:10.1521/aeap.2007.19.4.310]