Background: Genital human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the United States and African-American women have the highest prevalence of high-risk HPV. This study examined exposure to high-risk HPV in African-American women and its relation to risky sexual practices and laboratory-confirmed chlamydia. Methods: A sample of 665 African-American women between 18 and 29 years old, recruited from October 2002 to March 2006 in Atlanta, Georgia, completed an Audio Computer-Assisted Survey Interview assessing sociodemographics, health practices, and risky sexual practices. Participants also provided vaginal swab specimens assayed for STIs and high-risk HPV. Results: The overall prevalence of high-risk HPV was 38.9%. Among women 18 to 24 years old, it was 42.4%; it was 31% among women 25 to 29 years old. Age-stratified logistic regression analyses indicated that women between the ages of 18 and 29 and 18 and 24 who had multiple male sexual partners did not use a condom during their last casual sexual encounter and tested positive for chlamydia were significantly more likely to test positive for high-risk HPV. Women 18 to 24 years old who reported having a casual or risky sexual partner were significantly more likely to test positive for high-risk HPV. No significant correlates were identified among women 25 to 29 years old. Conclusions: Programs should aim to educate, decrease risky sexual practices, and increase screening and treatment for STIs among women with high-risk HPV infections. HPV vaccination recommendations for young adult African-American women warrant special consideration.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Obstetrics and Gynecology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Maternity and Midwifery