Prevalence of and risk indicators for STIs among women seeking induced abortions in two urban family planning clinics in Shandong province, People's Republic of China

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Objectives:To determine the prevalence and to assess factors associated with STIs in order to set up simple diagnostic procedures and/or prophylactic therapy among women seeking induced abortions.Methods:Women seeking induced abortions were recruited in two urban family planning clinics in Jinan, Shandong in a cross sectional study. A standardised questionnaire was used to collect demographic characteristics, obstetric and abortion history, condom use, and sexual risk behaviours. Vaginal and cervical samples were taken for the diagnosis of STIs and blood samples were collected for the testing of syphilis and HIV. Univariate and multivariate ORs and 95% CIs of risk factors for several STIs were determined using logistic regression.Results:Out of 2020 women seeking induced abortions in two family planning clinics, the prevalence of STIs was 4.8% for Chlamydia trachomatis, 0.4%Neisseria goorrhoeae, 2.5% trichomoniasis. Bacterial vaginosis was found in 3.4%. Five (1%) out of 503 women tested for syphilis had a positive TPPA and one of 787 women tested for HIV was seropositive. Although some risk factors were associated with the infections in logistic regression models, the positive predictive value was poor in this “low risk” population of women.Conclusions:Women attending for induced abortions could be a targeted group for STIs, especially for chlamydial infection. Since most infections are asymptomatic and no criteria for screening can be used in practice, other strategies to detect these genital infections need to be developed.

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