Sexual health research

Adelaide Sexual Health Centre participates in a number of national studies in relation to the prevention and management of sexually transmitted infections, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and risk behaviours that contribute to the acquisition of these infections. 

Changes to sexual health behaviour during COVID-19 restrictions

Current research

The purpose of this research is to investigate whether men who have sex with men attending the Adelaide Sexual Health Centre (either in person or by phone) changed their number of sexual partners and the way in which they met these partners in response to recommendations from the Federal and State Government for increased social distancing.

This will assist in understanding driver’s of sexual behaviour and particularly partner number.

High numbers of partners has been associated with increased risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infections. 

All responses in this research are confidential and entirely non-identifiable.

HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis study (PrEPX-SA)

Past research project

Adelaide Sexual Health Centre is partnering with Alfred Health and South Australian Health and Medical Research (SAHMRI) to determine the impacts of large scale access to HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) medication.

The PrEPX-SA study is open to 500 people of any sexual orientation or gender.

For more information on the study, including how to participate see the Alfred Health website or email


Past research project

Adelaide Sexual Health Centre is one of multiple clinical sites in Australia participating in an annual survey of men who have sex with men’s knowledge of mouthwash as a prevention for gonorrhoea infection in the pharynx.


Past research project

The Chemsex study is to determine how commonly Chemsex occurs in MSM in South Australia, determine the risks and characteristics of those MSM who do engage in Chemsex and to determine any association between Chemsex engagement and STI diagnosis including HIV.

The study will help inform public heath intervention strategies addressing sexually transmitted infections and blood borne virus transmission in South Australia

The study involved completing an anonymous online questionnaire.

The results of this study will be published soon.

Rectal chlamydia treatment trial

Past research project

The Rectal Treatment Study is looking into the effectiveness of two currently prescribed drugs to treat rectal chlamydia.

The Rectal Treatment Study is open to 700 gay or bisexual men around Australia. Participants will be prescribed azithromycin or doxycycline and be required to provide samples and answer questionnaires around recent sexual behaviour and antibiotic use.

For more information on the study, including how to participate see the Rectal Treatment Study website or email


Past research project

IMPACT is a large multi-centre program involving the collection of samples for human papillomavirus (HPV) testing from healthy 18 to 35 year old volunteers. The study is measuring what types of HPV are present in Australian men and women now that the HPV vaccine has been introduced.

Adelaide Sexual Health Centre has participated to a number of research studies, these include:


Past research project

This study was to find out how common HPV is among males aged 17 to 19 years. The researchers compared two groups: males who have been offered vaccination against HPV as part of the vaccination program and those who were not offered the vaccination.

The study was investigating whether vaccinating males against HPV helps to reduce HPV in males when females have already been vaccinated.

Findings of this research are available on the Journal of Infectious Diseases website.