Journal Article

Condom Effectiveness for Reducing Transmission of Gonorrhea and Chlamydia: The Importance of Assessing Partner Infection Status

Lee Warner, Daniel R. Newman, Harland D. Austin, Mary L. Kamb, John M. Douglas, C. Kevin Malotte, Jonathan M. Zenilman, Judy Rogers, Gail Bolan, Martin Fishbein, David G. Kleinbaum, Maurizio Macaluso and Thomas A. Peterman

in American Journal of Epidemiology

Published on behalf of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Volume 159, issue 3, pages 242-251
Published in print February 2004 | ISSN: 0002-9262
Published online February 2004 | e-ISSN: 1476-6256 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwh044
Condom Effectiveness for Reducing Transmission of Gonorrhea and Chlamydia: The Importance of Assessing Partner Infection Status

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This analysis examined the importance of differential exposure to infected partners in epidemiologic studies of latex condom effectiveness for prevention of sexually transmitted infections. Cross-sectional, enrollment visit data were analyzed from Project RESPECT, a trial of counseling interventions conducted at five publicly funded US sexually transmitted disease clinics between 1993 and 1997. The association between consistent condom use in the previous 3 months and prevalent gonorrhea and chlamydia (Gc/Ct) was compared between participants known to have infected partners and participants whose partner infection status was unknown. Among 429 participants with known Gc/Ct exposure, consistent condom use was associated with a significant reduction in prevalent gonorrhea and chlamydia (30% vs. 43%; adjusted prevalence odds ratio = 0.42, 95% confidence interval: 0.18, 0.99). Among 4,314 participants with unknown Gc/Ct exposure, consistent condom use was associated with a lower reduction in prevalent gonorrhea and chlamydia (24% vs. 25%; adjusted prevalence odds ratio = 0.82, 95% confidence interval: 0.66, 1.01). The number of unprotected sex acts was significantly associated with infection when exposure was known (p for trend < 0.01) but not when exposure was unknown (p for trend = 0.73). Restricting analyses to participants with known exposure to infected partners provides a feasible and efficient mechanism for reducing confounding from differential exposure to infected partners in condom effectiveness studies.

Keywords: chlamydia; contraceptive devices, male; gonorrhea; HIV infections; sexual behavior; sexually transmitted diseases; Abbreviations: Gc/Ct, gonorrhea/chlamydia; HIV, human immunodeficiency virus; STD, sexually transmitted disease; STI, sexually transmitted infection.

Journal Article.  7438 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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