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Oral contraceptive use may not preclude condom use: a study of non-pregnant African-American adolescent females
  1. Richard A Crosby1,
  2. Ralph J DiClemente2,
  3. Gina M Wingood2,3,
  4. Laura F Salazar2,3,
  5. Eve Rose2,
  6. Jessica M Sales2,
  7. Angela M Caliendo4
  1. 1Department of Health Behavior, College of Public Health, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA
  2. 2Department of Behavioral Sciences & Health Education, Rollins School of Public Health, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  3. 3Emory Center for AIDS Research, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  4. 4Department of Medicine (Infectious Diseases), Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr R A Crosby
 Department of Health Behavior, College of Public Health, University of Kentucky, 121 Washington Avenue, Lexington, KY 40506-0003, USA; crosby{at}


Objective: To determine the association between oral contraceptive and condom use, and laboratory-confirmed sexually transmitted infection (STI) among African-American adolescent females at a high risk of STI acquisition.

Methods: A cross-sectional study of 715 African-American adolescent females (15–21 years old) was conducted. Data collection included (a) an audio-computer-assisted self-interview and a self-collected vaginal swab for nucleic acid amplification testing of Trichomonas vaginalis, Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae.

Results: The age-adjusted odds ratio (AOR) indicated a modest protective effect of oral contraceptive use against unprotected vaginal sex (UVS) using a 60-day recall period (AOR = 0.66; 95% CI 0.43 to 0.99). The age-adjusted difference in mean frequency of UVS in the past 60 days was non-significant (p = 0.23) as was condom use at last sex (p = 0.34). The age-AOR relative to STI prevalence also showed a protective effect (AOR = 0.60; 95% CI 0.36 to 0.98) for those using oral contraceptives.

Conclusion: The findings suggest that the use of oral contraceptives may not preclude safer sex practices for the prevention of STIs among high-risk African-American adolescent females.

  • STI, sexually transmitted infection
  • UVS, unprotected vaginal sex

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  • Funding: Funding for the study was awarded to RJD and GMW.

  • Competing interests: None declared.

  • Study implementation and oversight was conducted by RJD, GMW and JM-S as well as ER. RAC and LFS analysed the data and interpreted the findings. RAC, LFS and RJD conceived the analyses and prepared the manuscript.