Researchers Look at Three Bacterial STDs Among Youth
May 4, 2001
A study in the March issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health examined results of syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia screening among youth in a federally-funded job training program. Data was evaluated from the medical records of 12,881 randomly selected participants ages 16-24 years old in 54 U.S. job training centers during 1996.
Males (7,084) were first screened the leukocyte esterase (LE). Results of urine screening for LE were identified for 6,173 (87%) males. Of 298 males with a positive LE test, follow-up gonorrhea and chlamydia test were performed and identified for 116 male students.
Syphilis Among Female and Male Students
Complete information on results of syphilis testing was available for 11,744 (91%) of participants.
The authors recommend that targeted education and prevention programs for adolescents and young adults should be implemented as an important component of any STD prevention program. They note, however, that despite such prevention programs, many youth will continue to acquire STDs. For this reason, they recommend routine screening and follow-up of sexually active adolescents and young adults, including those from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. They suggest that adolescents from such backgrounds may not regularly interact with the traditional clinical health care system and therefore that screening and treatment should be considered in alternative settings, including schools, community-based programs, and, as in this study, job training programs.
For more information: A. R. Lifson, et al., Screening for Sexually Transmitted Infections Among Economically Disadvantaged Youth in a National Job Training Program, Journal of Adolescent Health, vol. 28, no. 3, pp. 109-96.
This article was provided by Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States. It is a part of the publication SHOP Talk: School Health Opportunities and Progress Bulletin.