Medline ® Abstracts for References 29-31
of 'Bacterial vaginosis'
The influence of behaviors and relationships on the vaginal microbiota of women and their female partners: the WOW Health Study.
Bradshaw CS, Walker SM, Vodstrcil LA, Bilardi JE, Law M, Hocking JS, Fethers KA, Fehler G, Petersen S, Tabrizi SN, Chen MY, Garland SM, Fairley CK
J Infect Dis. 2014;209(10):1562. Epub 2013 Nov 27.
BACKGROUND: A community-based study of women who have sex with women (WSW) was performed to determine the burden of bacterial vaginosis (BV), and behavioral factors influencing the vaginal microbiota of women and their female sexual partners (FSPs), as measured by Nugent score (NS).
METHODS: In a cross-sectional study of 18-55-year-old WSW recruited nationally, participants completed questionnaires and self-collected vaginal swab samples weekly on 3 occasions. BV was defined as an NS of 7-10. Factors associated with BV, stability of NS category, and concordance of these categories in co-enrolled couples were examined with multivariable logistic regression analysis.
RESULTS: A total of 458 participants were recruited; 192 were co-enrolled with their FSP (96 couples). BV was detected in 125 women (27%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 23%-32%). BV was associated with≥4 lifetime FSPs (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 1.9; 95% CI, 1.2-3.1), an FSP with BV symptoms (AOR, 2.9; 1.0-8.2) and smoking, with≥30 cigarettes per week showing greatest odds (AOR, 2.7; 1.5-5.0). Of 428 women returning≥2 swab samples, 375 (88%) had a stable NS category across all samples, predominantly reflecting normal flora. Co-enrolled WSW were less likely to have BV (31% vs 23%; P = .07), and the majority (70%) were concordant for NS category (κ= 0.47; P≤.01), with most concordant for normal flora. Concordant NS category was associated with a relationship of>6 months (AOR, 4.7; 95% CI, 1.4-16.4) and frequent sexual contact (more than once per month; AOR, 2.7; 1.0-7.1).
CONCLUSIONS: BV is associated with key behaviors and smoking practices in WSW, but longer-duration, sexually active WSW partnerships support a stable favorable vaginal microbiota.
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health.
Characterization of vaginal flora and bacterial vaginosis in women who have sex with women.
Marrazzo JM, Koutsky LA, Eschenbach DA, Agnew K, Stine K, Hillier SL
J Infect Dis. 2002;185(9):1307.
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) may be common among women who report having sex with women (WSW) and frequently occurs in both members of monogamous couples. The results of Gram staining of a vaginal smear were consistent with BV in 81 (25%) and intermediate in 37 (11%) of 326 WSW included in this study. Lactobacilli were detected in 64% of subjects, and 42% of subjects had H(2)O(2)-producing strains. BV was associated with a higher lifetime number of female sex partners, failure to always clean an insertive sex toy before use, and oral-anal sex with female partners. Neither recent douching nor sexual practices with male partners were associated with BV. Vaginal smears from each partner were concordant in 55 (95%) of 58 monogamous couples; BV was present in both partners in 16 couples (28%) (P<.001, compared with expected distribution). BV was common among subjects who did not douche, who did not have concurrent sex with male partners, or who did not have a new sex partner, which suggests that other risk factors for BV exist. These data support the hypothesis that sexual exchange of vaginal secretions is a possible mechanism for acquisition of BV.
Department of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98104, USA. email@example.com
Incident bacterial vaginosis (BV) in women who have sex with women is associated with behaviors that suggest sexual transmission of BV.
Vodstrcil LA, Walker SM, Hocking JS, Law M, Forcey DS, Fehler G, Bilardi JE, Chen MY, Fethers KA, Fairley CK, Bradshaw CS
Clin Infect Dis. 2015;60(7):1042.
BACKGROUND: Female same-sex partnerships provide a unique opportunity to study the pathogenesis and transmissibility of bacterial vaginosis (BV) because it can be diagnosed in both members of the partnership. We conducted a nationwide community-enrolled cohort study of women who have sex with women, including women coenrolled with their regular female sexual partner (FSP), to investigate the BV incidence rate and factors associated with incident BV.
METHODS: Women who have sex with women, without prevalent BV in a cross-sectional study, were enrolled in a 24-month cohort study involving 3-monthly questionnaires and self-collected vaginal swabs that were scored by the Nugent method. We assessed the BV incidence rate per 100 woman-years (WY) and used univariate and multivariable Cox regression analysis to establish factors associated with BV acquisition.
RESULTS: Two hundred ninety-eight participants were enrolled in the cohort; 122 were coenrolled with their regular FSP. There were 51 incident cases of BV (rate, 9.75/100 WY; 95% confidence interval [CI], 7.41-12.83). Incident BV was associated with exposure to a new sexual partner (adjusted hazard ratio [AHR], 2.51; 95% CI, 1.30-4.82), a partner with BV symptoms (AHR, 3.99; 95% CI, 1.39-11.45), receptive oral sex (AHR, 3.52; 95% CI, 1.41-8.79), and onset of BV symptoms (AHR, 2.80; 95% CI, 1.39-5.61). Women coenrolled with their BV-negative partner had a greatly reduced risk of incident BV (AHR, 0.26; 95% CI, .11-.61), and high concordance of Nugent category (74%), which was predominantly normal vaginal flora throughout follow-up.
CONCLUSIONS: These data highlight the strong influence of sexual relationships and behaviors on BV acquisition and the vaginal microbiota. They provide epidemiological evidence to support exchange of vaginal bacterial species between women and the concept that BV is sexually transmitted.
Melbourne Sexual Health Centre, The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Melbourne School of Population Health, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria.