Risky Business: condom failures as experienced by female sex workers in Mombasa, Kenya.
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Limited research exists about condom failure as experienced by female sex workers. We conducted a qualitative study to examine how female sex workers in Mombasa, Kenya contextualise and explain the occurrence of condom failure. In-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with thirty female sex workers to ascertain their condom failure experiences. We qualitatively analysed interview transcripts to determine how the women mitigate risk and cope with condom failure. Condom failure was not uncommon, but women mitigated the risk by learning about correct use, and by supplying and applying condoms themselves. Many female sex workers felt that men intentionally rupture condoms. Few women were aware of or felt empowered to prevent HIV, STIs, and pregnancy after condom failure. Interventions to equip female sex workers with strategies for minimising the risk of HIV, STIs, and pregnancy in the aftermath of a condom failure should be investigated.
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