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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 20

of 'Bacterial vaginosis'

Early sexual experiences and risk factors for bacterial vaginosis.
Fethers KA, Fairley CK, Morton A, Hocking JS, Hopkins C, Kennedy LJ, Fehler G, Bradshaw CS
J Infect Dis. 2009;200(11):1662.
BACKGROUND: We have undertaken a cross-sectional study that investigates the association between bacterial vaginosis (BV) and sexual practices in sexually experienced and inexperienced women.
METHODS: Participants were 17-21-year-old females who attend Melbourne University, Australia. Study kits that contained an information and consent form, questionnaire, swab, and slide were distributed. Information regarding demographic characteristics and a broad range of sexual practices were collected. Gram-stained, self-collected vaginal smears were scored with the Nugent method. Associations between BV and behaviors were examined by univariate and multivariate analysis.
RESULTS: BV was diagnosed in 25 (4.7%) of 528 women (95% confidence interval [CI], 3.1%-6.9%). Importantly, BV was not detected in women (n = 83) without a history of coital or noncoital sexual contact (0%; 95% CI, 0%-4.3%). BV was detected in 3 (3.8%) of 78 women (95% CI, 0.8%-10.8%) with noncoital sexual experience only and in 22 (6.0%) of 367 women (95% CI, 3.8%-8.9%) who reported penile-vaginal sex. BV was associated with a history of any genital contactwith a sexual partner (P=.02). BV was strongly associated with>3 penile-vaginal sex partners in the prior year (adjusted odds ratio, 7.1; 95% CI, 2.7-18.4) by multivariable analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: This study shows a strong association between BV and penile-vaginal sex with multiple partners but found no BV in sexually inexperienced women, once a history of noncoital sexual practices was elicited. Our findings indicate that BV is not present in truly sexually inexperienced women.
Melbourne Sexual Health Centre, The Alfred Hospital, Victoria, Australia. kfethers@mshc.org.au