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  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Online) 2674-0710
Published by MDPI Homepage  [255 journals]
  • Venereology, Vol. 2, Pages 16-29: Determinants of Virological Failure in
           HIV Patients on Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART): A
           Retrospective Cross-Sectional Study in the Upper East Region of Ghana

    • Authors: Abdulai Abubakari, Habibu Issah, M. Awell Olives Mutaka, Mubarick Nungbaso Asumah
      First page: 16
      Abstract: Background: Even though highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) for HIV (Human Immune Deficiency) patients has considerably improved viral load suppression, more people still struggle to reduce viral loads. The aim of the study was to determine the associated factors of virological failure in HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the Upper East Region of Ghana. Methods: A retrospective cross-sectional study involving 366 participants aged 15 years and above who were on HAART for six (6) months or longer with viral load results in 2020. Bivariate and multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted to identify the determinants of virological failure among HIV patients at 95% confidence interval (C.I.) with a significant level pegged at a p value less than 0.05. Results: The prevalence of viral load failure was 47.0% and adherence to antiretroviral therapy was 62.6% among patients on HAART. The significant predicators of virological failure were basic education (AOR (adjusted odds ratio) = 7.36, 95% C.I = 4.91–59.71), High school/Vocational /Technical education (AOR = 4.70, 95% C.I. = 1.90–9.69), monthly salary/income ˂ GHS 375.00 (AOR = 7.20, 95% C.I. = 1.73–29.95), duration on ART for ˂1 year (AOR = 0.27, 95% C.I. = 0.10–0.75), ART regimen (Tenofovir + Lamivudine + Efavirenz) (AOR = 3.26, 95% C.I. = 1.95–11.25), 3–5 times missed medication per month (AOR = 2.86, 95% C.I. = 1.34–6.08) and ≥6 missed medication per month (AOR = 23.87, 95% C.I. = 10.57–53.92). Conclusion: Educational status, salary/income, ART duration, ART combination regimen, and number of doses missed were statistically significantly associated with virological failure in patients on antiretroviral therapy. The majority of the respondents adhered to ART, which led to moderate viral load suppression but lower than the target for 2020. There is the need to strengthen the ongoing accelerated social behavior change communication among patients on ART to enhance adherence in order to attain the new UNAIDS target of 95% viral load suppression by 2030 in the Upper East Region of Ghana.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2023-01-03
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology2010002
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2023)
  • Venereology, Vol. 2, Pages 30-42: A Smartphone-Based Pilot HIV Prevention
           Intervention (Sakhi) among Transgender Women Who Engage in Sex Work in
           India: Efficacy of a Pre- and Post-Test Quasi-Experimental Trial

    • Authors: Venkatesan Chakrapani, Pushpesh Kumar, Jasvir Kaur, Murali Shunmugam, Debomita Mukherjee
      First page: 30
      Abstract: Transgender women (TGW) in India, especially those who engage in sex work, are at high risk for HIV. Guided by the information-motivation-behavioral skills model and qualitative formative research findings, Sakhi (girlfriend), a 3-week smartphone-based pilot intervention consisting of short videos (one/week) and text messages (two/week), was implemented using a one-group pre- and post-test design to test its efficacy in promoting condom use and HIV testing among TGW (n = 50) who engage in sex work in Chennai. Changes in outcomes were assessed by conducting multivariable analyses using generalized estimating equations. Participants’ mean age was 26 years, and the mean monthly income was INR 21700 (USD 292). About one-third completed college, and 96% were HIV-negative. Significant changes in the desired direction were observed in the primary outcomes: condom use – decrease in the engagement of condomless anal sex with male partners (12% to 2%, p < 0.05) and HIV testing – increase in intentions to undergo HIV testing every 6 months (34% to 86%, p < 0.001); and in some of the secondary outcomes: decrease in alcohol use before sex, increase in intentions to use condoms consistently and increase in the well-being score. This study demonstrated the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of the Sakhi intervention and warrants a larger randomized trial among diverse subgroups in diverse settings.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2023-02-16
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology2010003
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2023)
  • Venereology, Vol. 2, Pages 43-58: School-Based Interventions on Human
           Papillomavirus in Africa: A Systematic Scoping Review

    • Authors: Jimoh Amzat, Kehinde Kazeem Kanmodi, Kafayat Aminu, Eyinade Adeduntan Egbedina
      First page: 43
      Abstract: School-age youth constitute a neglected but highly vulnerable group concerning sexual health risks in low-resource countries. Robust evidence concerning the research landscape of school-based interventions on human papillomavirus in Africa is currently lacking. Therefore, this systematic scoping review (SSR) aims to map evidence about school-based HPV interventions and identify emerging themes, gaps and lessons learned in Africa. This review was guided by Joanna Brigg’s Institute’s guidelines for SSRs and reported based on the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Metanalysis for Scoping Reviews. Five databases—PubMed, CINAHL, PsycINFO, SCOPUS, and Allied and Complementary Medicine—were searched for relevant literature using appropriate search terms and Boolean operators. The retrieved literature was extracted, deduplicated and screened using the Rayyan software. Only those articles which met the eligibility criteria were included for data charting, collation, and summarization. Ten articles were included in this review. The articles demonstrate that a life-course approach is significant in health intervention. School-based health interventions help reach adolescents in a dynamic life stage, affecting their vulnerability to sexual health risks. The school-based interventions serve as an ideal platform to offer HPV peer education, improving their HPV knowledge and subsequent testing services and enhancing their acceptability for screening and vaccination. Cervical cancer education and screening can be effectively combined in HPV health services for women. While the studies are geographically diverse, such effective interventions, which help reduce bottlenecks in accessing HPV screening and vaccination, are very few in Africa. In conclusion, school-based intervention is a viable strategy that can be adopted for adolescent protection from HPV-induced diseases. However, the current evidence on the impact of these interventions, particularly HPV vaccination, is inadequate.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2023-02-18
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology2010004
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2023)
  • Venereology, Vol. 2, Pages 1-15: Prevalence of Comorbidities and
           Associated Factors among HIV Patients Attending Antiretroviral Clinics in
           the Tamale Metropolis, Ghana

    • Authors: Kingsley Aseye Hattoh, Bryan Aapentuo Sienso, Eugene Dogkotenge Kuugbee
      First page: 1
      Abstract: Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a chronic infectious disease, and without antiretroviral therapy (ART), it is associated with comorbidities. The prevalence of comorbidities, adherence to ART and quality of life (QoL) of HIV patients were studied. A cross-sectional study design involving 360 HIV patients from two ART clinics across the Tamale metropolis was employed. Socio-demography, adherence to therapy, and QoL data were taken with the help of a questionnaire and analyzed using SPSS version 24. The prevalence of comorbidities was 30.3% (109), with Hepatitis B infection (73, 20.3%) being the most prevalent. Adherence levels were high (192, 53.3%), moderate (108, 30.0%) and low (60, 16.7%). Overall, QoL was excellent amongst 149 (41.4%), good in 169 (46.7%), and poor in 42 (11.7%) respondents. Marital status, presence or absence of HIV symptoms, adherence level to ART and overall QoL, especially Physical, Psychological, and independence domains (p < 0.05), were factors associated with the presence of comorbidities. There is a high level of comorbidities among persons living with HIV (PLWH) in the Tamale metropolis influenced by QoL and adherence to ART. We recommend a multifaceted approach to the management of PLWH.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-12-28
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology2010001
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 223-234: Factors Associated with the Use of
           Industrial Liquid Silicone among Travesti and Transgender Women in
           Salvador, Northeast Brazil

    • Authors: Ricardo Araújo da Silva, Luís Augusto Vasconcelos da Silva, Fabiane Soares, Inês Dourado
      First page: 223
      Abstract: Background: The illicit use of industrial liquid silicone (ILS) is a common practice among travesti and transgender Women (TrTW) in the process of bodily change. The “pumped ladies” apply the ILS without any preparation regarding biosafety, and this practice poses serious risks to the health of TrTW, including death. This study aims to describe the prevalence of ILS use and estimate the associated factors among TrTW in a Brazilian city. Methods: This behavioral and serological survey employed the Respondent-Driven Sampling (RDS) recruitment technique. Participants who declared themselves to be travesti or transgender women over 15 years were considered eligible. The sample consisted of 127 TrTW. The bivariate analysis estimated the prevalence of ILS use by sociodemographic, cultural, and behavioral variables. Multivariate analysis used Poisson regression for adjusted estimates with respective 95% confidence intervals. Results: Approximately 31.6% of the TrTW (n = 44) used ILS and 57.2% (n = 67) were under 25 years old. Most (73.2%, n = 79) had access to more than eight years of schooling. Nine percent (n = 15) tested positive for HIV, and 31.6% (n = 48) tested positive for syphilis. The TrTW who felt more comfortable with their body image had a threefold higher prevalence of ILS use and those who performed an HIV test before the study had a 4.5 times higher prevalence of ILS. Conclusion: ILS is widely used by TrTW in Brazil. Although public policies for the transgenderizing process exist, this process still occurs illicitly.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-10-10
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1030016
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 3 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 235-244: Treatment of Sexually Transmitted
           Infections (STIs) Caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae and the Global Shortage
           of Antibiotics

    • Authors: José Luis Rodrigues Martins, Emerith Mayra Hungria Pinto, Salomão Antonio Oliveira, Fernanda Almeida Costa Gomes, Osmar Nascimento Silva
      First page: 235
      Abstract: The gonorrhoea caused by the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae remains a major global public health problem with high morbidity. Gonorrhoea can affect both women and men, being more prevalent in sexually active young individuals. Even after infection from N. gonorrhoeae, many patients may remain asymptomatic, making the diagnosis and adequate treatment of the disease difficult. The treatment and control of gonorrhoea have been difficult in recent years in most populations, being an example of how behavioural, social, and demographic factors can influence the epidemiology of an infectious disease. The emergence of strains of N. gonorrhoeae resistant to multiple antimicrobials, especially to extended-spectrum cephalosporins, indicates that gonorrhoea has the potential to become untreatable in the current reality of treatment options, especially in places that have a high prevalence of gonococcal infections. The loss of available and effective treatment options can lead to significant increases in new cases of the disease, as well as increased morbidity and mortality. This review provides an overview of current therapeutic options for gonorrhoea, as well as ongoing experimental studies and clinical trials with new antigonococcal agents.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-10-24
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1030017
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 3 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 245-261: Sub-Regional Variations in Sexually
           Transmitted Infections Manifesting as Vaginitis among Reproductive-Aged
           Women in Sub-Saharan Countries

    • Authors: Michael Ekholuenetale, Chimezie Igwegbe Nzoputam, Osaretin Christabel Okonji
      First page: 245
      Abstract: Sexually transmitted infection refers to a group of clinical syndromes that can be acquired and transmitted through sexual activity and are caused by a variety of pathogens such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites. Methods: Demographic and Health Survey data involving women aged 15–49 years were analyzed for this study. The surveys were conducted between 2006–2021. Statistical significance was determined at p < 0.05. Results: From the results, Liberia (33.0%), Mali (14.0%), Guinea (13%), Uganda, and Sierra Leone (12.0% each) had the highest STI prevalence. Prominently from Western sub-Saharan Africa sub-region, Liberia (40.0%), Guinea (31.0%), Mali (28.0%), Cote d’Ivoire (24.0%), Ghana (23.0%) and Mauritania (22.0%) have the highest prevalence of reporting a bad smelling or abnormal genital discharge. In addition, Liberia (30.0%), Uganda (13.0%) and Malawi (10.0%) have the highest prevalence of reporting genital sores or ulcers. Liberia (48.0%), Guinea (34.0%), Mali (32.0%), Ghana and Mauritania (25.0% each) and Uganda (24.0%) reported the leading prevalence of STI, genital discharge, or a sore or ulcer. Conclusion: The prevalence of vaginitis varied according to women’s characteristics. In many countries, younger women, urban dwellers, educated women, rich and unmarried women reported a higher prevalence of STI, genital discharge, or a sore or ulcer. Women should be educated on the advantages of proper hygiene, and prevention and control of STIs. Program planners and policymakers should assess and improve the collaboration and coordination of nutritional and family health programs aimed at addressing women’s health issues.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-11-02
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1030018
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 3 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 262-271: Trends and Factors Associated with HIV
           Testing among Adolescent Girls and Young Women in Lesotho: Results from
           2004 to 2014 Lesotho Demographic and Health Surveys

    • Authors: Onalethata Ntshadi Sonny, Alfred Musekiwa
      First page: 262
      Abstract: HIV/AIDS is prevalent among adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) in Lesotho, and among the top five infectious diseases causing a high mortality rate in Africa. The paramount management of HIV is based on screening, prevention, and therapeutic interventions, of which HIV testing and counselling (HTC) is the gateway. The utilization of HTC services among AGYW is limited owing to numerous barriers encountered by this population group. The aim of this study was to assess trends and factors associated with HTC among AGYW in Lesotho. A secondary data analysis was used to analyze data sets extracted from the 2004, 2009, and 2014 Lesotho Demographic Health Surveys (LDHS). The LDHS was conducted using a cross-sectional study design and samples drawn were representative of the whole population of Lesotho. We used descriptive analysis to determine trends in HTC. In determining factors associated with the uptake of HTC, univariate and multivariable logistic regression models were applied on the 2014 LDHS. All analyses were adjusted for unequal sampling probabilities using survey weights. The number of AGYWs analyzed were 2743 in 2004, 2393 in 2009, and 2842 in 2014. The overall prevalence estimates of HTC uptake were 12%, 62.2%, and 72.5%, respectively. For the 15–19 years AGYW, HTC uptake rose from 6.2% (2004), 46.3% (2009), to 57.9% (2014), while for the 20–24 years age group, the rates were 18.7%, 80.2%, and 88.3%, respectively. For the 2842 AGYW in 2014, the odds of ever having an HIV test were significantly higher for those aged 20–24 years (aOR 2.15, 95% CI 1.61 to 2.87, p < 0.001), in a union (aOR 3.21, 95%CI 2.25 to 4.58, p < 0.001), with Mother-to-child transmission of HIV (MTCT) knowledge (aOR 1.53, 95%CI: 1.21 to 1.94, p < 0.001), with HIV non-discriminatory attitudes (aOR 2.50, 95%CI 1.87 to 3.34, p < 0.001), and those who had ever been pregnant (aOR 11.53, 95%CI 7.46 to 17.84, p < 0.001). HTC uptake among AGYW in Lesotho is below expected targets, hence we recommend optimizing access to HTC services, especially for AGYW aged 15–19 years.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-11-07
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1030019
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 3 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 161-169: Ophthalmic Manifestations among HIV
           Patients at the Main Tertiary Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone: A
           Cross-Sectional Study

    • Authors: Jalikatu Mustapha, Enanga Sonia Namanga, Baimba Idriss, Daniel Sesay, Darlinda F. Jiba, James B. W. Russell, Mathew J. Vandy, Gibrilla F. Deen, George A. Yendewa, Sulaiman Lakoh
      First page: 161
      Abstract: Ophthalmic diseases are common among people living with HIV (PLHIV) in developing countries. However, there are currently no published studies on ophthalmic complications among PLHIV in Sierra Leone. We conducted a cross-sectional study of PLHIV presenting at Connaught Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone from January through March 2020. Logistic regression was used to identify associations between ophthalmic manifestations and potential risk factors. A total of 103 PLHIV were studied (78.6% female, median age 41 years, 100% treatment-experienced). The median CD4 cell count was 374 cells/mm3 and 76.7% were virologically suppressed. Overall, 44.7% of study participants had at least one ophthalmic complication and 51.5% had poor visual acuity in at least one eye. The most common conditions were dry eye (21.4%), cataract (20.4%), blepharitis (10.7%), nucleosclerosis (6.8%), conjunctivitis (5.8%), penguecula (5.8%), toxoplasmic retinochoroiditis (3.9%), and posterior vitreous detachment (2.9%). In multivariate logistic regression analysis, poor visual acuity (adjusted odds (aOR) 2.75, 95% confidence interval (CI) [1.12–6.78]; p = 0.040) and CD4 cell count < 100 cells/mm3 (aOR 3.91, 95% CI [1.07–14.31]; p = 0.028) were independently associated with ophthalmic disease. A high proportion of PLHIV in this study had ophthalmic complications. This calls for greater integration of HIV and ophthalmologic care.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-07-04
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1020011
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 2 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 170-186: Phototherapy-Based Treatment for
           Sexually Transmitted Infections—Shining Light into Unexplored

    • Authors: Nour Mammari, Michael R. Hamblin, Pauline Rauger, Laurence Boyer, Mihayl Varbanov
      First page: 170
      Abstract: New therapeutic strategies are urgently needed to overcome drawbacks in the treatment of some infections, particularly sexually transmitted infections (STI). STIs are easily spread by the transmission of various bacteria, viruses, and parasites with some of the infections being incurable or even lethal, leading to a serious impact on reproductive health worldwide. Phototherapy (PT) is a major therapeutic approach based on the controlled administration of light in the visible, near infrared, or UV spectrum, with or without the application of an external photosensitizer. Despite the fact that PT has not been explored to its full potential in the control of STIs, it has already demonstrated good clinical response rates and lower recurrence rates in genital infections. For instance, increasing evidence has demonstrated that 5-aminolevulinic acid photodynamic therapy (5-ALA-PDT) is effective in the treatment of condyloma acuminatum (CA), by eliminating the causative latent human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, and also in the antiviral treatment of recurrent genital herpes simplex virus (HSV) infections. The clinical application of PDT is a new treatment for oral fungal infection caused by Candida albicans in adult acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients, with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and could also be used for genital fungal infections. Another antimicrobial PT strategy, water-filtered infrared A combined with visible light irradiation, has been shown to be effective against genital Chlamydia trachomatis bacterial infection, and an optical nano-genosensor has been designed for the diagnosis of trichomoniasis, a parasitic Trichomonas vaginalis infection. This review aims to summarize the published evidence for the effectiveness of PT in the treatment of STIs, and for the suppression of STI-related pathogens of various types.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-07-04
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1020012
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 2 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 187-198: The Impact and Spillover Effects of
           HIV Self-Test Technology on HIV Outcomes of the South African Working

    • Authors: Cyprian M. Mostert
      First page: 187
      Abstract: Background: South Africa recently adopted HIV self-test technology (HIVST) to improve HIV testing and encourage earlier treatment initiation in working populations with a low uptake of conventional testing approaches. This study investigates the impact of HIVST on testing outcomes, focusing on both frequent and infrequent working-class testers. The paper also examines the spillover effect of HIVST on antiretroviral (ART) treatment initiation. To identify these effects, the author focused on South Africa and exploited the HIVST distribution data of 6259 beneficiaries of HIVST. Methods: The author used a two-stage least-squared model to quantify the impact of the HIVST on these vulnerable working populations. Results: The results show that HIVST fosters a 27.6% higher testing uptake in infrequently testing workers compared to frequently testing workers, and that the uptake of HIVST is 11.5% higher in rural regions than in urban settings, as well as 14.5% more prominent in infrequent male testers than infrequent female testers. Notably, the positive effects of HIVST are also confirmed by the presence of positive spillover effects in workers screening positive for HIV. The paper documents a 7.6% increase in ART initiation in infrequent testers. Conclusions: There is a case for adopting this technology to improve the uptake of HIV testing and ART initiation as the country seeks to attain the UNAIDS 95–95–95 targets by 2030.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-08-10
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1020013
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 2 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 199-211: A Review of Monkeypox: The New Global
           Health Emergency

    • Authors: Kritika Srinivasan Rajsri, Mana Rao
      First page: 199
      Abstract: Monkeypox, once a rare zoonotic disease, has been endemic to some African countries since its original identification among humans in 1970. Since then, cases in non-endemic regions have been linked to returning travelers or those who had contact with transported animals. The causative agent, Monkeypox virus, belongs to Orthopoxviruses, the same family as Variola—the causative organism for smallpox. Although most monkeypox outbreaks until recently were linked to zoonotic transmission, secondary human–human transmission in smallpox-unvaccinated individuals was observed in a small proportion of overall cases. Smallpox was declared to be eradicated in 1980, and since its eradication, Monkeypox virus has been the most significant poxvirus to cause human disease. The 2022 monkeypox outbreak marks a significant paradigm shift in the human and poxvirus association, with new modes of transmission and concerns of viral evolution and entrenchment as a sexually transmitted disease. Monkeypox clinically resembles smallpox but is far milder. At this time, there are no approved therapies for monkeypox, and antiviral agents effective against smallpox are being utilized. Additionally, preventive strategies being utilized include smallpox vaccinations such as JYNNEOS and ACAM2000. In this narrative review, we discuss the virology, epidemiology, transmission, clinical manifestations, diagnosis, management, and prevention strategies associated with monkeypox.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-09-05
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1020014
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 2 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 212-222: Willingness to Test for Human
           Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Infection among First-Year Students of a
           Public University in the Volta Region of Ghana

    • Authors: Mispa Tepe-Mensah, Joseph Osarfo, Evans Kofi Agbeno, Gifty Dufie Ampofo
      First page: 212
      Abstract: Voluntary counselling and testing (VCT) is key in HIV prevention. Young people aged 15–24 years carry a significant burden of new infections globally, but VCT uptake is low in this population. The study assessed university freshmen’s willingness to test for HIV now, among others, in a cross-sectional study as university campuses are places of risky sexual behaviour. Structured questionnaires were used to collect data on age, sex, marital status, HIV/AIDS knowledge, previous history of testing, willingness to test now, and others. Summary statistics were reported while chi-square and logistic regression methods were used to assess the association between dependent and independent variables with p-values < 0.05 held significant. About 90% (374/412) of respondents had good HIV/AIDS knowledge based on criteria defined by the study, but only 23.3% (96/412) had ever tested and 66.3% (266/401) were willing to test now for HIV. Respondents’ sex, previous sexual intercourse, and whether respondents’ educational support was from parents or non-parents influenced willingness to test for HIV now. The study highlights what appears to be personal beliefs that can potentially hinder HIV testing and control efforts. Relevant stakeholders must address these gaps to improve testing. Further qualitative investigation will improve understanding of the dynamics informing willingness to test for HIV among young people generally.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-09-13
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1020015
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 2 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 23-46: 2021 CDC Update: Treatment and
           Complications of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

    • Authors: Benjamin Silverberg, Amy Moyers, Tate Hinkle, Roanna Kessler, Nancy G. Russell
      First page: 23
      Abstract: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently updated their Sexually-Transmitted Infection (STI) Treatment Guidelines with a revision to the approach to gonococcal infections in December 2020 and other STIs in July 2021. This article reviews the new recommendations and highlights important updates from the 2015 iteration that are crucial for primary care and community health practice.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-01-12
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010004
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 47-80: Novel Treatment Approaches to Combat
           Trichomoniasis, a Neglected and Sexually Transmitted Infection Caused by
           Trichomonas vaginalis: Translational Perspectives

    • Authors: Graziela Vargas Rigo, Luiza Abrahão Frank, Giulia Bongiorni Galego, André Luis Souza dos Santos, Tiana Tasca
      First page: 47
      Abstract: The multistep translational science behind new drugs comprehends the entire process through laboratory, clinical, and community observations turned into health interventions. The development of new drug options from discovering targets and leading compounds in basic research for implementing therapeutic guidelines contributes to the emergence of health policies essential for infection control. This review updates the translational research in the scenario of the most common non-viral sexually transmitted infection (STI), trichomoniasis. Paradoxically to its high occurrence, it is considered neglected since notification is not mandatory. It turns into a stable disease with health complications, and receives little emphasis from public health programs to control STI. Although related to curable STIs, the current drugs, metronidazole and tinidazole, present therapeutic failures. The need for new options to treat trichomoniasis is established by basic research studies and patents revealing novel synthetic compounds and natural products presenting anti-Trichomonas vaginalis activities, mainly based on in vitro findings. Clinical trials are still focused on new routes of administration for conventional drugs. In addition, nanotechnology approaches are in their infancy, shedding light on potential possibilities for creating more effective, targeted, and safe delivery systems. Overall, the novel proposed approaches need, in addition to pharmaceutical development and efficacy assessments, to ensure that the quality requirements for their use as medicines are met. It is essential to overcome these issues to cross the “Death Valley” of drug discovery and to advance in the translational science criteria in the trichomoniasis drug development field.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-01-29
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010005
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 81-97: Knowledge, Prevalence and Factors
           Associated with Sexually Transmitted Diseases among Female Students of a
           Federal University in Southern Nigeria

    • Authors: Chimezie Nzoputam, Vincent Yakubu Adam, Ogochukwu Nzoputam
      First page: 81
      Abstract: Background: Globally, over 40 million people are estimated to be living with sexually transmitted infection/diseases (STI/Ds), including HIV/AIDS. It is said that sub-Saharan Africa accounts for over a half of that figure, making it the continent most affected with HIV/AIDS and other STI/Ds. This study was designed and conducted to assess the knowledge and prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases, and factors that are associated with it, among female students of a university in southern Nigeria. Methods: This cross-sectional analytical study was conducted among female students in five faculties in the University of Benin, Benin City. The instrument used for the collection of data was a self-administered questionnaire. Data were analyzed with the aid of SPSS, version 22.0. A level of significance was set at p < 0.05 and descriptive statistics were used to summarize the data. An odds ratio with a 95% confidence interval for prevalence and factors associated with STI/Ds was computed using binary and multinomial logistic regression models. Results: A total of 423 female students participated in the study. Over half (224, 53.0%) of the participants have had sexual intercourse. The results show that majority of the respondents (95.3%) were aware of STIs and 83.1% had good knowledge of STIs. The prevalence of STI/Ds among the participants was 27.7%, with gonorrhea being the most frequent STI/D that the respondents reported testing positive for. Conclusion: The present study was able to ascertain a higher prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases among female students. To this end, it is imperative that families and agencies (both government and private agencies) should synergize to remove the embargo seemingly placed on women by our cultures and faith-based institutions regarding sexuality. This may help to improve access to sexual and reproductive health education and commodities for women, thereby play a vital role in reducing the transmission of STI/Ds.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-02-09
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010006
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 98-113: A Global Scoping Review of the Factors

    • Authors: Karan Varshney, Alexander Ikanovic, Prerana Ghosh, Pavan Shet, Marcus Di Sipio, Chirag Khatri, Malik Quasir Mahmood
      First page: 98
      Abstract: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–syphilis co-infection poses a threat to certain populations, and patients may have considerably poorer health outcomes due to these infections. Our objective was therefore to provide a scoping review of the literature regarding the factors associated with HIV–syphilis coinfection. We searched PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science, and produced a total of 1412 articles. After completing the screening process as per the Preferred Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis extension for Scoping Review (PRISMA-ScR) guidelines, a total of 109 articles were eligible for inclusion. A total of 68,634 co-infected patients were included in our review. Findings from studies across 40 countries demonstrated that males—particularly men who have sex with men—compose the overwhelming majority of co-infected cases. Additional risk factors include a low CD4 cell count, current or past sexually transmitted infections, and a high number of sexual partners. Our findings have important implications in guiding public health programs across the globe that aim to lower the rates of HIV–syphilis co-infection. More research is also needed on the role of educational attainment, comorbidities, and consistent condom usage regarding the risk for co-infection.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-04-22
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010007
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 114-123: Recurrent Candida Vulvovaginitis

    • Authors: Lauryn Nsenga, Felix Bongomin
      First page: 114
      Abstract: Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC), predominantly caused by Candida albicans, is estimated to affect about 138 million women each year worldwide and 492 million over their lifetimes. Recurrent VVC (RVVC), defined as four or more episodes of VVC in a year, is increasingly recognized and constitutes up to 10% of the cases of VVC. RVVC is an important clinical and global public health challenge project that will affect about 160 million per year by 2030. RVVC significantly affects the quality of life of the affected women. Host factors, such as underlying immunosuppressive conditions and genetic predisposition, are suggested key risk factors for recurrence. However, an increasingly higher prevalence of non-albicans Candida (NAC) species, such as C. glabrata, C. tropicalis, C. krusei, C. parapsilosis, C. dubliniensis, C. guilliermondii, and others, which are either intrinsically resistant to azoles or have higher minimum inhibitory concentrations to most antifungal agents, such as fluconazole, which are commonly used for the treatment of VVC/RVVC, has been reported. Therefore, treatment remains a challenge. Long-term maintenance antifungal is required to avoid recurrence of symptoms. Alternative treatment includes boric acid and topical amphotericin B; however, they are associated with serious side effects, limiting their use. The oral echinocandin ibrexafungerp is well-tolerated and efficacious against Candida vulvovaginitis. RVVC presents a unique area for continued research and development.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-05-24
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010008
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 124-134: Prevalence of Hepatitis B Virus
           Seromarkers in Female Sex Workers in Enugu State, Nigeria

    • Authors: Oluchi Mary-Cynthia Aniche, Ibuchukwu Nkeonyenasoya Orabueze, Ifeyinwa Nkiruka Nwafia, Justina Uchechi Ihezuo, Chinwe Blessing Chinaka, Kingsley Andrew Egbe, Anthony Chibuogwu Ike
      First page: 124
      Abstract: Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a sexually transmitted virus with a wide range of terminal complications. As such, female sex workers (FSWs) are an important group in the epidemiology of the virus. This study was aimed at evaluating the seroprevalence of HBV markers and the exposure rate of the virus among FSWs in Enugu State, Nigeria. A cross-sectional study was carried out among brothel-based FSWs, involving 200 participants recruited using a consecutive sampling method. Blood specimens were collected and tested for HBV markers using chromatographic immunoassay rapid test kits. Additional information was obtained through the administration of a well-structured pre-tested questionnaire. Data were entered into Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20.0 and analyzed using the Descriptive Statistics and Chi-Square test in SPSS. Out of the 200 sampled individuals, 82(41%) tested positive for at least one seromarker, with 44(22%) showing evidence of natural infection and 38(19%) indicating a vaccine response. Hepatitis B core antibody (total anti-HBc) was present in 42(21%) of the participants, while 8(4%) had hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg), which is indicative of current infection. This study revealed intermediate prevalence, a high exposure rate and a low vaccination rate among the study population. There is a need for more effective intervention strategies among FSWs in the study area.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-06-01
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010009
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
  • Venereology, Vol. 1, Pages 135-160: Neuroinformatics Insights towards
           Multiple Neurosyphilis Complications

    • Authors: Arun Kumar Jaiswal, Syed Babar Jamal, Lucas Gabriel Rodrigues Gomes, Rodrigo Profeta, Helioswilton Sales-Campos, Carlo Jose Freire Oliveira, Flávia Figueira Aburjaile, Sandeep Tiwari, Debmalya Barh, Marcos Vinicius da Silva, Siomar de Castro Soares, Vasco Azevedo
      First page: 135
      Abstract: Treponema pallidum subspecies pallidum causes syphilis, a sexually transmitted disease that infects more than 2.1 million pregnant women every year. Due to its maximum death rates and augmented risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, the disease is still a matter of debate in many low- and high-income countries. The infection has three stages that lead to several complications if left untreated and can lead to many tertiary complications in the brain, eyes, ears, heart, and pregnancy. Neurosyphilis is also known as the clinical result of infection of the central nervous system by Treponema pallidum subspecies pallidum. It can evolve at any time and from any stage of syphilis exposure. This review briefly explains the severe and multiple neurosyphilitic complications and recently identified cases related to neurosyphilis. We also explained computational neuroscience, neuroinformatics, and in silico models and techniques based on artificial intelligence and other computational and mathematical methods. These techniques have already been applied to several neurological and psychological brain complications and can be applied to neurosyphilis to better understand the persistence of the disease related to the brain that causes neurosyphilis.
      Citation: Venereology
      PubDate: 2022-06-06
      DOI: 10.3390/venereology1010010
      Issue No: Vol. 1, No. 1 (2022)
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Heriot-Watt University
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