Factors that predict fertility desires for people living with HIV infection at a support and treatment centre in Kabale, Uganda

Reprod Health. 2010 Oct 11:7:27. doi: 10.1186/1742-4755-7-27.


Background: Studies from different contexts worldwide indicate that HIV positive patients manifest high-risk sexual behavior characterized by fertility intentions, multiple sexual partners, non-use of contraceptives and non-disclosure of HIV status to their sex partners. The objective was to analyze fertility desires among persons living with HIV at a treatment centre in Kabale Hospital, Southwestern Uganda.

Methods: From January to August 2009, we interviewed 400 HIV positive patients seeking care using an interviewer-administered questionnaire. We assessed socio-demographic variables, reproductive history, sexuality and fertility desires. At bivariate and multivariate analysis, characteristics of participants who reported or did not report desire to have a child in the near future were compared.

Results: Of the 400 respondents, (25.3%) were male, 47.3% were aged 25-34 years, over 85% were currently married or had ever been married, and the 62% had primary level of education or less. Over 17% had produced a child since the HIV diagnosis was made, and 28.6% reported that they would like to have a child in the near future. Age of the respondent, being single (versus being ever-married) and whether any of the respondents' children had died were inversely associated with fertility intentions.

Conclusion: Factors inversely associated with fertility intentions were age of the respondent, marital status and whether any of the respondents' children had died. Use of antiretroviral therapy was not associated with fertility intentions.