HIV risk higher in abused women in India

Aug. 14, 2008 at 11:35 PM
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BOSTON, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Married women in India whose husbands abuse them physically and sexually have an increased risk of HIV infection, researchers said.

Jay G. Silverman of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and colleagues conducted a study in 2007 and 2008 to assess the relationship between experiencing intimate partner violence and the occurrence of HIV infection in a nationally representative sample of married Indian women tested for HIV.

The researchers analyzed data on 28,139 married women who provided intimate partner violence data, and HIV test results, as part of a national family health survey conducted across India during 2005 and 2006.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found 35 percent of married Indian women reported they had experienced physical intimate partner violence, with or without sexual violence, from their husbands. About one-fourth reported experiencing physical Intimate partner violence without sexual violence, while 7.7 percent reported both physical and sexual intimate partner violence.

"Prevention of intimate partner violence may augment efforts to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS," the authors said in a statement.

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