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Sexual behavior of women with repeated episodes of vulvovaginal candidiasis

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One hundred and two women with a history of a median of six episodes of vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) and 204 age-matched controls participated in a structured in-depth interview on sexual behavior. Mean and median ages of the two groups were 26.7 and 26 years, respectively. Sexual characteristics, associated with VVC in crude analyses, were adjusted in multifactorial analyses for coital frequency, experience of casual sex, vaginal irritation, smoking, alcohol habits, and having a steady partner. In addition, education, as a measure of socioeconomic status, was added in the multifactorial analyses. VVC was not associated with multiple sexual partners or ever-experience of causal sex. Sexual variables that remained significant or were of borderline significance after adjustment were: age at first intercourse (p=0.001), casual sex partners the previous month (odds ratio (OR)=3.1), sex during menstruation (OR=1.7), regular oral sex (OR=2.4), experience of anal intercourse ever (OR=2.4), oral intercourse the last month (OR=3.1), and frequency of oral intercourse (p=0.02). Thus, the study indicates that certain sexual activities are associated with repeated episodes of VVC.

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Correspondence to Dan Hellberg MD, PhD.

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Hellberg, D., Zdolsek, B., Nilsson, S. et al. Sexual behavior of women with repeated episodes of vulvovaginal candidiasis. Eur J Epidemiol 11, 575–579 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01719311

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Key words

  • Sexual behavior
  • Sexually transmitted disease (STD)
  • Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC)