Health Indicators Among Low-Income Women Who Report a History of Sex Work: The Population-Based Northern California Young Women's Survey
November 2, 2005
The authors conducted a secondary analysis of a population-based, cross-sectional survey of young, low-income women in northern California, examining differences in demographic characteristics, HIV-related risk behavior, prevalence of sexually transmitted infections (STI) and HIV, and other health concerns among women with and without a history of sex work.
Of 2,543 women interviewed, 8.9 percent reported a history of sex work. Those women reported more lifetime male sexual partners, were more likely to use drugs before sex, and were more likely to have a history of having sex with partners at high risk for HIV (i.e., men who have sex with men, men who inject drugs, or men known to be HIV-positive). They were also significantly more likely to have positive serology for syphilis, herpes simplex virus type 2 and hepatitis C regardless of their personal injecting drug use history, the study reported. However, they were no more likely to have HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis A or hepatitis B than women with no history of sex work. Women with a history of sex work, the researchers found, were significantly more likely to have a history of sexual coercion and tobacco use.
"These data measure the population prevalence of sex work among low-income women and associated STI," the authors concluded. "Women with a history of sex work have health concerns beyond STI and HIV treatment and prevention."
Sexually Transmitted Infections
10.05.05; Vol. 81: P. 428-433; D.L. Cohan; A. Kim; J. Ruiz; S. Morrow; J. Reardon; M. Lynch; J.D. Klausner; F. Molitor; B. Allen; B. Green Ajufo; D. Ferrero; G. Bell Sanford; K. Page-Shafer; V. Delgado; W. McFarland; Young Women's Survey Team
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.