Evidence for behavioural interventions addressing condom use fit and feel issues to improve condom use : A Systematic Review
Continuing high rates of sexually transmissible infections (STIs) in many countries highlight the need to identify effective behavioural interventions. Consistent and correct use of male condoms is a key strategy for the prevention of STIs. However, some men report problems with condom fit (e.g. the size and shape of the condom) and feel (e.g. tightness, irritation, sensitivity), which inhibits their use. We conducted a systematic review to identify existing interventions addressing condom use fit and feel problems. We searched electronic databases for peer-reviewed articles and searched reference lists of retrieved studies. Five studies met the inclusion criteria. These were generally small-scale pilot studies evaluating behavioural interventions to promote safer sex with men aged under 30 years, addressing, among other things, barriers to condom use relating to fit and feel. There were significant increases in the reported use of condoms, including condom use with no errors and problems. Improvements in some condom use mediators were reported, such as condom use self-efficacy, knowledge, intentions and condom use experience. There were mixed findings in terms of the ability of interventions to reduce STI acquisition. Behavioural interventions addressing condom fit and feel are promising in terms of effectiveness but require further evaluation.