Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on men who have sex with men who practice chemsex in France: results of the national ERAS web survey
This article was originally published here
Am J Mens Health. 2022 Jan-Feb;16(1):15579883211073225. doi: 10.1177/15579883211073225.
Chemsex – drug use in a sexual context – has been associated with riskier sex and substance use complications among men who have sex with men (MSM). To date, no study has focused on the impact of the first coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) lockdown in France on the mental health and drug/alcohol use of MSM who practice chemsex. We set up an online survey of 9,488 MSM living in France in June 2020 (after the first COVID-19 related lockdown in the country). Specifically, we first compared the subpopulation of MSM who reported having chemsex the most recent time they had sex (defined as “chemsexers”) with other MSM, using five outcomes: increase 1 /tobacco consumption, 2/alcohol consumption and 3/consumption of other psychoactive drugs. 4/the use of psychotropic drugs during confinement, and finally 5/psychological distress. We then analyzed the associations of the results with the main explanatory variable “chemsexer”, after adjusting for all relevant variables. Among 7,195 MSM who had sex with a man in the last 6 months, 359 participants (5%) were identified as “chemsexers”. Multivariate analyzes showed that during the first period of confinement, chemsexers were significantly more likely than non-chemsexers to have increased their consumption of tobacco, alcohol and other psychoactive substances. Chemsexers were also more likely to have used psychotropic medications and to have experienced psychological distress in the past month. Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in France and around the world, this finding highlights the need to develop psychosocial interventions and harm reduction services for MSM chemsexers, potentially via mobile health.
PMID:35156425 | DOI: 10.1177/15579883211073225