Correlates of condom breakage and slippage among university undergraduates

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SummaryAn anonymous questionnaire was used to explore relationships between condom breakage, slippage and possible correlates in a sample of 428 single, nevermarried college men and women. Specific condom use errors and problems that could lead to breakage and slippage were also examined. A three-month recall period was used. Breakage/slippage was found to be associated with never receiving instruction on correct condom use (P = 0.001), more than one sex partner (P = 0.001), more frequent use of condoms (P = 0.001), and partner(s) being less than highly motivated to use condoms (P = 0.02). Those reporting that condoms had contacted a sharp object were three times as likely to report breakage (P = 0.001). Those using condoms without proper lubrication (P = 0.006) and those experiencing loss of erection during sex (P = 0.001) were more likely to report slippage. Further research should investigate the efficacy of instruction addressing specific factors that may reduce the incidence of breakage/slippage, thereby enhancing condom effectiveness.

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