Gonorrhea reinfection among sexually transmitted disease clinic attendees in Baltimore, Maryland

Kyle T. Bernstein, Jonathan Zenilman, Glen Olthoff, Vincent C. Marsiglia, Emily J. Erbelding

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: We hypothesized that an active follow-up program to assess for reinfection after gonorrhea treatment could be a useful disease control strategy. Goal: We evaluated an active follow-up and repeat testing program for all Baltimore sexually transmitted disease clinic patients diagnosed with gonorrhea. Study Design: From September 2003 to May 2004, all clients with a treated gonorrhea infection were advised to return 3 months later for repeat testing. If clients did not return as scheduled, field outreach was attempted. At follow-up visits, urine was tested for gonorrhea and consenting participants completed a behavioral survey. In addition, we reviewed morbidity records for any intercurrent gonorrhea infections reported during the project period. Results: Of the 667 participants diagnosed with gonorrhea at baseline, 54 had a gonorrhea reinfection diagnosed for an incidence of 13.8 per 100 person-years. One hundred seventy-eight (27%) either presented for a follow-up visit or were located through field efforts, and of these, 5 (2.8%) had gonorrhea detected on follow-up urine testing. No measured factors had predictive value in identifying gonorrhea reinfection. Conclusions: Although reinfection rates were high, we found that field staff intervention to increase follow-up testing rates did not identify a significant amount of repeat infections compared with passive surveillance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)80-86
Number of pages7
JournalSexually transmitted diseases
Volume33
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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