Spatial distribution and cluster analysis of risky sexual behaviours and STDs reported by Chinese adults in Guangzhou, China: a representative population-based study

Sex Transm Infect. 2016 Jun;92(4):316-22. doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2015-052268. Epub 2016 Feb 3.


Objectives: To assess associations between residences location, risky sexual behaviours and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among adults living in Guangzhou, China.

Methods: Data were obtained from 751 Chinese adults aged 18-59 years in Guangzhou, China, using stratified random sampling by using spatial epidemiological methods. Face-to-face household interviews were conducted to collect self-report data on risky sexual behaviours and diagnosed STDs. Kulldorff's spatial scan statistic was implemented to identify and detect spatial distribution and clusters of risky sexual behaviours and STDs. The presence and location of statistically significant clusters were mapped in the study areas using ArcGIS software.

Results: The prevalence of self-reported risky sexual behaviours was between 5.1% and 50.0%. The self-reported lifetime prevalence of diagnosed STDs was 7.06%. Anal intercourse clustered in an area located along the border within the rural-urban continuum (p=0.001). High rate clusters for alcohol or other drugs using before sex (p=0.008) and migrants who lived in Guangzhou <1 year (p=0.007) overlapped this cluster. Excess cases for unprotected sex (p=0.031) overlapped the cluster for college students (p<0.001). Five of nine (55.6%) students who had sexual experience during the last 12 months located in the cluster of unprotected sex.

Conclusions: Short-term migrants and college students reported greater risky sexual behaviours. Programmes to increase safer sex within these communities to reduce the risk of STDs are warranted in Guangzhou. Spatial analysis identified geographical clusters of risky sexual behaviours, which is critical for optimising surveillance and targeting control measures for these locations in the future.


Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • China / epidemiology
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Risk-Taking
  • Self Report
  • Sexual Behavior / statistics & numerical data*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Students / psychology
  • Students / statistics & numerical data
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Transients and Migrants / psychology
  • Transients and Migrants / statistics & numerical data
  • Unsafe Sex / statistics & numerical data*
  • Young Adult