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COVID-19, fear and sexual behaviour: a survey in a tertiary STI clinic in Lisbon
  1. Ana Luísa João1,
  2. André Lencastre2,3,
  3. Joana Calvão4,
  4. Ana Rodrigues1,
  5. Cândida Fernandes1
  1. 1Dermatology Department, Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Central EPE, Lisboa, Portugal
  2. 2Dermatology Department, Hospital de Cascais Dr Jose de Almeida, Alcabideche, Portugal
  3. 3Dermatology Department, Hospital da Luz, Lisboa, Portugal
  4. 4Dermatology Department, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário de Coimbra EPE, Coimbra, Portugal
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ana Luísa João, Dermatology Department, Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Central EPE, Lisboa, Portugal; luisajoao92{at}

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COVID-19 lockdowns impose constraints on sexual health services and related medical activities. Our STI clinic favoured telemedicine as advised by specialist societies,1 illustrating the feasibility of maintaining STI care provision during a state of emergency. Recommendations regarding changes to sexual behaviour were also provided.2 At least theoretically, lockdown could lead to behavioural changes and a reduction in the risk of STIs. To date, published reports indicate that during the lockdown of Spring 2020, STI incidence was either comparable3 or reduced4 5 relative to previous years. Whether the apparent reduction indicates a true epidemiological change or rather an underestimation due to lack of presentation for diagnosis remains to be determined.

We therefore aimed to explore the effect of the exceptional challenges imposed by lockdowns on human behaviour and sexual health. The cross-sectional study was conducted in a drop-in …

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