Herpes simplex virus type 2 infection among bar and hotel workers in northern Tanzania: prevalence and risk factors

Sex Transm Dis. 2003 Mar;30(3):187-92. doi: 10.1097/00007435-200303000-00001.


Background: Type-specific serological tests have allowed for a better understanding of the epidemiology of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infection in Africa.

Goal: The goal was to determine risk factors for HSV-2 among bar and hotel workers in Moshi, Tanzania.

Study design: A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 515 workers in randomly selected bars and hotels in Moshi.

Results: The seroprevalence of HSV-2 was 43.5%. Women were more likely to be HSV-2-seropositive than men (age-adjusted OR = 3.8; 95% CI = 2.5-5.8). In multivariate analyses, age was positively associated with HSV-2 in both women and men. HIV-1-seropositive women had a significantly increased risk of HSV-2 infection (adjusted OR = 2.8; 95% CI = 1.5-5.1). Other predictors of HSV-2 were religion and sexual behavior for women and level of education, frequency of alcohol use, and concurrent partners for men.

Conclusion: The most common genital infection was that with HSV-2. Control of HSV-2 might be an important strategy for HIV-1 infection prevention in this population.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Alcoholism
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Herpes Genitalis / epidemiology*
  • Herpes Genitalis / etiology
  • Herpesvirus 1, Human / isolation & purification*
  • Herpesvirus 2, Human / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Risk-Taking
  • Sex Factors
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / etiology
  • Tanzania / epidemiology
  • Workplace*