Monday, November 10, 2008

Heterosexual Anal Sex Activity in the Year After an STD Clinic Visit

Sexually Transmitted Diseases Vol. 35; No. 11: P. 905-909 (11..08)
Lin H. Tian, MD, MS; Thomas A. Peterman, MD, MSc; Guoyu Tao, PhD; Lesley C. Brooks, BA; Carol Metcalf, MBChB, MPH; Kevin C. Malotte, DrPH; Sindy M. Paul, MD, MPH; John M. Douglas Jr., MD; The Respect-2 Study Group

Click here for the abstract.

The research team undertook the current study to describe anal sex activity during a year and to identify factors associated with heterosexual anal sex and condom use. They performed secondary analysis of data from a trial conducted in three public STD clinics. The patients described sexual behaviors every three months for the year. To include multiple observations from each subject, logistic regression models with generalized estimating equations were used.

During the project, 2,357 heterosexual subjects reported on 6,611 three-month intervals that included 9,235 partnerships. About 18.3 percent of participants reported anal sex in a particular three-month interval; 39.3 percent reported anal sex during the year. Anal sex in at least two three-month intervals was reported by 23.5 percent.

The results found that anal sex was associated with having more sex acts, two or more sex partners, unprotected vaginal sex, and a main partner. For anal sex in the previous three months, 27.3 percent reported consistent condom use, while 63 percent reported never using condoms. Consistent condom use during anal sex was found to be associated with consistent condom use for vaginal sex, having two or more partners, and having anal sex with a casual or new partner.

"STD clinic patients were commonly engaged in heterosexual anal sex, and most of them never used condoms during anal sex," the authors concluded. "Patients who had anal sex tended to also engage in other risk behaviors that put them at risk of STD/[HIV]. Clinicians should ask about anal sex, appropriately examine and test patients who have had anal sex, and recommend condom use for both anal and vaginal sex."

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