Predictors of Sexually Transmitted Infection in Australian Women: Evidence from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
This longitudinal study examined characteristics of women diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections (STI) for the first time in their later 20s and early 30s. Participants were 6,840 women (born 1973–1978) from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. Women aged 18–23 years were surveyed in 1996 (S1), 2000 (S2), 2003 (S3), and 2006 (S4). There were 269 women reporting an STI for the first time at S3 or S4. Using two multivariable logistic regression analyses (examining 18 predictor variables), these 269 women were compared (1) with 306 women who reported an STI at S2 and (2) with 5,214 women who never reported an STI across the four surveys. Women who reported an STI for the first time at S3 or S4 were less likely to have been pregnant or had a recent Pap smear compared to women reporting an STI at S2. Women reporting a first STI at S3 or S4 were less likely to have been pregnant or had a recent Pap smear compared to women reporting an STI at S2. Women were more likely to report an STI for the first time at S3 or S4 compared to women not reporting an STI at any survey if they were younger, unpartnered, had a higher number of sexual partners, had never been pregnant, were recently divorced or separated, and reported poorer access to Women’s Health or Family Planning Centres at S2. These findings demonstrate the value of longitudinal studies of sexual health over the life course beyond adolescence.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2007). Divorces, Australia, 2007 (Cat. No. 3307.0.55.001). Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics Retrieved from http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/mf/3307.0.55.001.
- Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2000). National Health Data Dictionary. Version 9.(Cat.no. HWI 24). Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Retrieved from: http://www.aihw.gov.au/publication-detail/?id=6442467139.
- Bateson, D. J., Weisberg, E., McCaffery, K. J., & Luscombe, G. M. (2012). When online becomes offline: Attitudes to safer sex practices in older and younger women using an Australian internet dating service. Sexual Health, 9, 152–159.
- Brown, W. J., Bryson, L., Byles, J. E., Dobson, A. J., Lee, C., Mishra, G., et al. (1998). Women’s Health Australia: Recruitment for a national longitudinal cohort study. Women and Health, 28, 23–40.
- Buffardi, A. L., Thomas, K. K., Holmes, K. K., & Manhart, L. E. (2008). Moving upstream: Ecosocial and psychosocial correlates of sexually transmitted infections among young adults in the United States. American Journal of Public Health, 98, 1128–1136. CrossRef
- Elder, G. H. (1985). Life course dynamics: Trajectories and transitions, 1968–1980. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
- Fenton, K. A., Korovessis, C., Johnson, A. M., McCadden, A., McManus, S., Wellings, K., et al. (2001). Sexual behaviour in Britain: Reported sexually transmitted infections and prevalent genital Chlamydia trachomatis infection. Lancet, 358, 1851–1854. CrossRef
- Fergusson, D. M., Horwood, L. J., & Lynskey, M. T. (1997). Childhood sexual abuse, adolescent sexual behaviors and sexual revictimization. Child Abuse and Neglect, 21, 789–803. CrossRef
- Ford, K., & Chamratrithirong, A. (2009). First sexual experience and current sexual behaviour among older Thai men and women. Sexual Health, 6, 195–202. CrossRef
- Grulich, A. E., De Visser, R. O., Smith, A. M. A., Rissel, C., & Richters, J. (2003). Sex in Australia: Sexually transmissible infection and blood-borne virus history in a representative sample of adults. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 27, 234–241. CrossRef
- Herbert, D., Lucke, J., & Dobson, A. (2009). Pregnancy losses in young Australian women: Findings from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. Women’s Health Issues, 19, 21–29. CrossRef
- Johnson, A. M., Mercer, C. H., Erens, B., Copas, A. J., McManus, S., Wellings, K., et al. (2001). Sexual behaviour in Britain: Partnerships, practices, and HIV risk behaviours. Lancet, 358, 1835–1842. CrossRef
- Khan, A., Hussain, R., & Schofield, M. (2005). Correlates of sexually transmitted infections in young Australian women. International Journal of STD and AIDS, 16, 482–487. CrossRef
- Kuh, D., & Hardy, R. (2002). A life course approach to women’s health. Oxford: Oxford University Press. CrossRef
- Lee, C., Dobson, A. J., Brown, W. J., Bryson, L., Byles, J., Warner-Smith, P., et al. (2005). Cohort profile: The Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. International Journal of Epidemiology, 34, 987–991. CrossRef
- Lindau, S. T., & Gavrilova, N. (2010). Sex, health, and years of sexually active life gained due to good health: Evidence from two US population based cross sectional surveys of ageing. British Medical Journal, 340, c810. doi:10.1136/bmj.c810. CrossRef
- Marshall, B. L. (2011). The graying of “sexual health”: A critical research agenda. Canadian Review of Sociology, 48, 390–413. CrossRef
- Mirza, T., Kovacs, G. T., & Kinfu, Y. (2001). Serving rural Australia with reproductive health expertise. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 9, 241–245. CrossRef
- Mirza, T., Kovacs, G. T., & McDonald, P. (1998). The use of reproductive health services by young women in Australia. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 38, 336–338. CrossRef
- National Health and Medical Research Council. (2001). Australian alcohol guidelines: Health risks and benefits. Endorsed October 2002. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia. Retrieved from http://www.nhmrc.gov.au/guidelines/publications/ds9-0.
- Paul, C., van Roode, T., Herbison, P., & Dickson, N. (2009). Longitudinal study of self-reported sexually transmitted infection incidence by gender and age up to age thirty-two years. Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 36, 63–69. CrossRef
- Piper, J. M. (2008). Prevention of sexually transmitted infections in women. Infectious Disease Clinics of North America, 22, 619–635, v–vi.
- Potter, J., Trussell, J., & Moreau, C. (2009). Trends and determinants of reproductive health service use among young women in the USA. Human Reproduction, 24, 3010–3018. CrossRef
- Powers, J., & Loxton, D. (2010). The impact of attrition in an 11-year prospective longitudinal study of younger women. Annals of Epidemiology, 20, 318–321. CrossRef
- Rich, E. R. (2001). Negotiation of HIV preventive behaviors in divorced and separated women reentering the sexual arena. Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care, 12, 25–35. CrossRef
- Schofield, M. J., Minichiello, V., Mishra, G. D., Plummer, D., & Savage, J. (2000). Sexually transmitted infections and use of sexual health services among young Australian women: Women’s Health Australia study. International Journal of STD and AIDS, 11, 313–323. CrossRef
- Sherman, C. A., Harvey, S. M., & Noell, J. (2005). “Are they still having sex?” STIs and unintended pregnancy among mid-life women. Journal of Women and Aging, 17, 41–55. CrossRef
- Simon, W., & Gagnon, J. H. (1986). Sexual scripts: Permanence and change. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 15, 97–120. CrossRef
- Smith, A. M. A., Rissel, C., Richters, J., Grulich, A. E., & De Visser, R. O. (2003). Sex in Australia: Reflections and recommendations for future research. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 27, 251–256. CrossRef
- Ware, J., Snow, K., Kosinski, M., & Gandek, B. (1993). SF-36 health survey: Manual and interpretation guide. Boston: Nimrod Press.
- Predictors of Sexually Transmitted Infection in Australian Women: Evidence from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health
Archives of Sexual Behavior
Volume 42, Issue 2 , pp 237-246
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer US
- Additional Links
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Life course epidemiology
- Sexual health
- Industry Sectors
- Author Affiliations
- 1. UQ Centre for Clinical Research, The University of Queensland, Herston, QLD, 4029, Australia
- 2. School of Population Health, The University of Queensland, Herston, QLD, Australia
- 3. Priority Research Centre for Gender, Health and Ageing, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW, Australia