Interrelationships Among Douching Practices, Risky Sexual Practices, and History of Self-Reported Sexually Transmitted Diseases in an Urban Population


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Abstract

Goals:To describe the interrelationships of douching, sex during menses, dry sex, and anal intercourse and their associations with self-reported history of sexually transmitted diseases (STD).Study Design:The authors interviewed by telephone 422 white Americans (WA) and 44 African Americans (AA) selected using random-digit dialing, and 135 AA selected from a listed sample of census tracks having a population of at least 40% AA.Results:After adjusting for lifetime numbers of vaginal sex partners, sex during menses was associated with self-reported history of chlamydial infection among women (WA: odds ratio [OR]= 3.9; confidence interval [CI]: 1.1, 14.0; AA: OR = 1.6; CI: 0.6, 4.2). Anal sex was associated with self-reported history of genital warts, genital herpes, hepatitis, and gonorrhea; douching with a twofold increase in self-reported pelvic inflammatory disease. Anal sex was most common in women with a history of same- and opposite-sex partners.Conclusions:These data confirm the association of douching and anal sex with various STD and suggest that sex during menses is associated with chlamydial infection.

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