Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are a significant cause of adverse outcomes of pregnancy. STDs are often associated with social factors such as race and education, but data on STDs among pregnant women are limited. We estimated the prevalence of self-reported curable STDs among pregnant women and described the characteristics of pregnant women with and without STDs.
We performed a descriptive analysis of self–reported data from the Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System, a survey of U.S. women with a recent live birth. We analyzed the latest available data (2009–2011) from states asking standardized questions on STDs diagnosed during pregnancy. Accounting for survey design, we calculated weighted prevalence estimates and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), stratified by demographic and social characteristics.
In total, 13,874 women responded from 5 states. Overall, 3.3% (CI: 2.9–3.7) reported ≥1 curable STD during their most recent pregnancy (chlamydia: 2.4%, trichomoniasis: 1.0%, gonorrhea: 0.5%, syphilis: 0.3%). Of women reporting STDs, 48.4% [CI: 42.3–54.5] were black compared to 14.1% [CI: 13.3–15.0]) of women without STDs who were black. Of women reporting STDs, 42.7% [CI: 36.7–48.8] were aged 20–24 years compared to 24.5% [CI: 23.4–25.6]) of women without STDs who were in that age group. Also, 83.1% [CI: 78.6-87.5] of women with STDs were unmarried compared to 40.8% [CI: 39.5–42.1]) of women without STDs who were unmarried. In addition, 72.5% (CI: 66.8–78.1) of women with an STD had no college education compared to 43.7% (CI: 42.4–45.0) of women without an STD. Women reporting an STD were also more likely to lack health insurance prior to pregnancy (41.2% [CI: 35.0–47.5]) versus 24.7% [CI: 23.6–25.8]) without an STD, and to report intimate partner violence during pregnancy (8.8% [CI: 5.6–12.0] versus 3.1% [CI: 2.7–3.6]).
To our knowledge, this is the largest study of prevalence of self-reported STDs among pregnant U.S. women. STDs were more common among women who were young, non-Hispanic black, unmarried, those with limited education, and those lacking health insurance. Similar to the general population, these differences highlight the impact socioeconomic factors have on the risk of STDs.
E. Llata, None
E. Meites, None
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