Explore the appropriateness of the theory of planned behavior (TPB) model for analyzing risky sexual behavior in men who have sex with other men (MSM), with the object of proposing an alternative model that improves understanding.
Qualitative analysis of semi-structured individual and nominal group interviews conducted with 45 MSM who engaged in risky sexual behavior (insertive or receptive anal penetration without use of a condom) during the past 12 months. In order to manage the data, a discourse analysis using the constant comparative method was performed in two phases: a) identification of TPB variables and incongruities between this theory and the statements made by the informants, and b) proposal of an alternative psychosocial model that is consistent with the results.
The overall appropriateness of the TPB was confirmed, with changes in specific aspects and the introduction of new variables that could be included in subsequent research in order to quantitatively verify the potential increase in the predictive and/or explanatory capacity of the model for risky sexual behavior in MSM.
The results obtained appear to indicate the importance of testing the mathematical assumptions of the TPB model. A stable balance was established between validation of the TPB and suggesting possible changes in specific aspects that could be included in subsequent research to confirm the potential increase in the explanatory capacity of the model for risky sexual behavior in MSM.
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