Factors associated with PrEP stigma among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM): A systematic review


Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM) are disproportionately affected by HIV. While pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is highly effective at preventing HIV acquisition, uptake of PrEP among gbMSM is low, which may in part be due to stigma associated with PrEP use. This systematic review aimed to explore experiences of PrEP stigma and to identify factors associated with this. Four databases were searched for papers including terms relating to (i) gbMSM, (ii) PrEP, and (iii) stigma, with narrative synthesis used to analyze results. After screening, 70 studies were included in the final analysis. Experiences of PrEP stigma were found to be characterized by a number of stereotypes and came from a range of sources. Five categories of factors were associated with stigma: (i) healthcare-related factors, (ii) cultural and contextual factors, (iii) sociodemographic factors, (iv) peer-discussion, and (v) psychosocial factors. These findings suggest that stigma can be a common experience for gbMSM. However, some are more at risk than others. Interventions aimed at reducing PrEP stigma may be useful in increasing uptake.


Howell J, Deane-King J, Maguire R




  • Epidemiology and Determinants of Health
    • Determinants of Health
  • Determinants of Health
    • Stigma/discrimination
  • Population(s)
    • Men who have sex with men
    • General HIV- population
  • Prevention, Engagement and Care Cascade
    • Prevention
  • Prevention
    • Biomedical interventions


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