Sexually Active African-American Teenage Girls Lacking STD Knowledge
A survey of more than 500 sexually active African-American teenage girls from "high-risk, low-income" neighborhoods found that many do not know the basics about most sexually transmitted diseases and how they are spread, Reuters Health reports. Dr. Richard Crosby of Emory University and colleagues asked the girls to answer 12 "yes" or "no" questions about STDs and STD prevention. On average, the girls answered only half of the questions correctly. Some of the survey's findings are listed below:
- More than 50% of respondents thought all STDs were curable, that STDs do not increase the odds of HIV transmission and that douching after sex can protect against STD infection;
- Less than 33% of those surveyed knew that women are more susceptible to STD infections, including HIV;
- Nearly 66% of the girls incorrectly said sheep-skin condoms were more effective at preventing STD transmission than latex condoms;
- Slightly less than half of the respondents incorrectly thought that oil-based lubricants would reduce their HIV risk when used in conjunction with condoms;
- One-third of those asked said they thought they "could always tell" if a partner had an STD; and
- 40% of the girls did not know that STDs can lead to infertility if left untreated.