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  1. Marianne Morris
  1. PHLS Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre, 61 Colindale Avenue, London NW9 5EQ, UK MMorris{at}

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    Editor,—I thank Dr Fethers for pointing out the discrepant reference in our paper.1

    The discussion paragraph referred to conflicting results from studies focusing on the transmission of bacterial vaginosis (BV) in lesbians. A cross sectional prevalence study by Berger et al among monogamous sexual partners reported that of 11 index women with BV, eight (72.2%) had partners with BV. This compared with only one (10%) partner with BV of the 10 index women without infection.2 The high level of concordance was attributed to the probable sexual transmission of BV within lesbian couples.

    The evidence against the sexual transmission of BV among lesbians should have referred to a paper by McCaffrey et al, though this was not among concordant partners. This study of sexual practices among women attending a specialist genitourinary medicine clinic in London reported that of 15 exclusively lesbian women, 40% had BV compared with 55% of the 76 women who were not exclusively lesbian.3 Therefore, the presence of BV did not appear related to sexual practices among lesbians.

    I hope that the matter has now been clarified.


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