IJSSH 2012 Vol.2(2): 139-142 ISSN: 2010-3646
DOI: 10.7763/IJSSH.2012.V2.83

Anthropology and Clinical Trial Emerging Reproductive Issues in Cambodia

Pascale Hancart Petitet
Abstract—At the Institute Pasteur du Cambodge, existing links among researchers involved in programs funded by the National Agency for Research on AIDS and Hepatitis led principal investigators of clinical trial and social scientists to work together. This paper presents how we framed this research that aims to document, from an anthropological point of view, various issues related to procreation and contraception for people living with HIV within the clinical trial "Camelia” (ANRS 1295–CIPRA KH001). Indeed, in the CAMELIA clinical trial a total of 661 patients (236 women) were enrolled. Despite the strong requirement stated in the informed consent form, 19 women enrolled in the trial became pregnant. The anthropological research was helpful to bring insights into how the clinical trial deal with various social forms related to reproductive practices produced globally, reinterpreted locally and negotiated by patients. It provides body rich stories of lived bodies and various insights on how HIV/Aids mostly combines to poverty challenge both the reproductive norms and “choices” and the “emic” notion of « couple» and « family ». For example, we describe why CAMELIA patients do not always disclose their HIV status to their partner and the social construction and social implications of such decision. We explored the reasons and strategies they mobilized to maintain a couple relationship. We analyzed how CAMELIA team deals within those complexities and pointed out the individual and structural intertwined logics behind discourses and facts. Thus we illustrate also how reproductive bodies are enacting and being enacted when medical things travel in poor Cambodian settings and where medicine and biological risks figure only as a reduced part of daily life.

Index Terms—Anthropology, reproduction, Clinical trial camellia, Cambodia

Pascale Hancart Petitet is with the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, UMI 233, currently welcomed at the Institut Pasteur du Cambodge and affiliated to the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research. France (e-mail: pascalehp@gmail.com).

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Cite: Pascale Hancart Petitet, "Anthropology and Clinical Trial Emerging Reproductive Issues in Cambodia," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 2, no. 2, pp. 139-142, 2012.
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