Chemsex is the phenomenon of using illicit drugs to enhance and prolong sexual experience in MSM users (men having sex with men). The study tries to understand the pattern, context, harm reduction, and experience of first-time users in Italy.

The study collected data from thirty individuals who underwent MSM using Chemsex between Feb and Jul 2019. The interview was conducted, and the results were mapped on an ad hoc grid regarding harm reduction options, first-time experience, the pattern of use, and other general characteristics.

Most of the interviewees attended the Chemsex session once or twice a month. The most commonly used substance was freebase cocaine, along with mephedrone, crystal methamphetamine, and gamma-hydroxybutyrate/butyrolactone. The first-time experience was generally rated positively with negative emotions at the end, like guilt, dysphoric status, and craving. Most of the subjects mentioned that they use Chemsex only abroad or in other Italian cities to avoid recognition in their daily routine.

The study showed the requirement of a detailed study on the effect, prevention method, and any harm reduction tools. The results also showed the Chemsex characteristics in Italy like high freebase cocaine use, secrecy, attitudes towards slamming, and geographical movements. Thus, good public attention and scientific studies are required on this subject.

Ref: https://www.jsm.jsexmed.org/article/S1743-6095(20)30725-6/fulltext