Protective and risk factors for sexually transmitted infections in middle school students

Nancy Woodhead, Shang En Chung, Alain Joffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

PURPOSE:: Significant numbers of adolescents are initiating sexual activity at age 13 and younger. Little is known about this younger population of adolescents. This includes risk or protective factors for sexual activity and sexually transmitted infection (STI) acquisition. To safeguard all adolescents from the consequences of risky sexual behaviors, and to insure age appropriate and effective interventions, further study is critical to address risky behaviors specific to early adolescents. METHODS:: This study was a retrospective chart review of 155 sexually active adolescent girls enrolled in 3 inner city school-based health centers. Students were divided into those who never had a documented STI and those who had 1 or more STIs. Data were collected from a sexual history questionnaire and the Guidelines for Adolescent Preventive Services questionnaire. These data were grouped into risk or protective Guidelines for Adolescent Preventive Services domains. Domains were made up of 5 items of protective factors, 3 items of peer risks, 2 items of family risks, and 7 items of individual risks. STI outcomes were compared to these characteristics. RESULTS:: One hundred fifty-five sexually active black adolescents were studied. A univariate and multivariate analysis of risk and protective factors for testing positive for an STI demonstrated that high levels of protective factors reduced the risk of STIs. CONCLUSION:: Increased levels of protective factors were associated with a decrease in STI risk. This suggests that STI prevention programs should focus on increasing protective factors among young adolescents in addition to reducing risk factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)280-283
Number of pages4
JournalSexually Transmitted Diseases
Volume36
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2009

Fingerprint

Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Students
Sexual Behavior
Guidelines
Protective Factors
School Health Services
Multivariate Analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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

Cite this

Protective and risk factors for sexually transmitted infections in middle school students. / Woodhead, Nancy; Chung, Shang En; Joffe, Alain.

In: Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Vol. 36, No. 5, 01.05.2009, p. 280-283.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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