Determining Factors Associated with Sexual Behavior and Undesired Outcomes in Urban, Young, Adult Female Populations: A Comparative Study.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unwanted pregnancies affect adolescent females annually. This study’s objective was to determine factors leading to disproportionate risk of STIs and unplanned pregnancies utilizing a survey to compare a presumed high-risk urban female population with an age-matched expected low-risk urban female population.
The ED cohort had higher rates of chlamydia (52% vs 5%), gonorrhea (20% vs 0%), trichomoniasis (30% vs 2%), pregnancy (60% vs 2%), and perceived themselves to be a higher-risk for pregnancy (3.4 vs 1.9) than the University cohort. They were younger the first time they had vaginal sex (15.6 vs 16.3-years), though median age of first oral sex was similar between groups. The ED cohort
was older (21.4-years-old vs 19.1-years-old) and more likely to be non-white (64% vs 6%). There were no differences between the cohorts in regard to educational background and sexual orientation.
Adolescents (15-19-years-old) and young adults (20-24-yearsold) account for approximately 25% of the sexually experienced population with the average age of first intercourse being 17.3-years.1-5 Restricting to those who engaged in any type of sexual activity before age 18, the average first age of oral sex is 15.8, vaginal sex 15.5, and anal sex 16.4-years.6 Regardless of age, when people begin to engage in sexual activity (whether oral, vaginal, or anal sex), the risk for exposure to sexually transmitted infections and risk of pregnancy increases compared to peers who are abstinent. According to the US Department of Health in 2017, 40% of US high schoolers reported a history of having sex with 10% reporting sex with more than 4 total partners.
Women Health Open J. 2021; 7(1): 10-26. doi: 10.17140/WHOJ-7-142