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Mental Health and Sexual Identity in a Sample of Male Sex Workers in the Czech Republic

Michael Bar-Johnson, Petr Weiss

First Medical Faculty, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

Med Sci Monit 2014; 20:1682-1686

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.891092

Available online:

Published: 2014-09-20

Background: Previous qualitative research has examined male sex workers in the Czech Republic, but this mapping study is the first to investigate male sex work in a quantitative research design and focus on the mental health of these sex workers. This study also examines male sex workers’ mental health problems in relation to their sexual identity or orientation.
Material and Methods: A sample of Czech male sex workers (N=40) were examined on a range of sexual and psychological variables using a quantitative survey administered face-to-face. The study employed locally validated versions of Beck’s Depression Inventory and Zung’s Self-Report Anxiety Scale.
Results: The results indicate that for homosexuals, working as a male sex worker is not related to any serious mental health problems. However, those identifying as heterosexual and bisexual more frequently reported symptoms of depression and bisexuals showed significantly more anxiety.
Conclusions: These findings suggest sexual identity is an important issue to consider when addressing the mental health needs of this population.

Keywords: Anxiety - psychology, Czech Republic - epidemiology, Depression - psychology, Gender Identity, Mental Health - statistics & numerical data, Sex Workers - statistics & numerical data, young adult