Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Pilot Study of a Free Home Test Kit for Sexually Transmitted Diseases

04.08.2004


Researchers at Johns Hopkins have launched the first government-sponsored study to measure the effectiveness of a Web- and community-based home test kit for common sexually transmitted diseases, such as Chlamydia and gonorrhea.



The study will measure how many women make use of the kit, determine disease prevalence among respondents, record how effectively test results can be returned to the participants, and assess how well respondents who test positive follow through with therapy.

The overall aim of the researchers is to replicate the successful introduction of widely used home pregnancy tests and lower the rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among young women, who are most at risk of contracting an STD and least likely to undergo regular check-ups for disease prevention.


"Many women are left unaware for years that they have an STD because symptoms do not commonly appear for long periods after infection," said study lead investigator and infectious disease specialist Charlotte Gaydos, M.S., Dr.P.H., associate professor of medicine at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. "Indeed, Chlamydia is 80 to 90 percent without any symptoms of infection, and it can take two to three years before infected women develop signs of pelvic inflammatory disease, a condition that can leave a woman infertile from resulting scar tissue."

Funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the study test kit will be available only in Maryland, and at participating pharmacies and some recreation centers. The kit consists of a packaged, sterile vaginal swab and instructions for using it. Also enclosed are sealed containers for the self-collected swabs and return envelopes with postage paid for mailing the samples back to a laboratory at Johns Hopkins, where they will be tested.

Results will be available within two weeks via a secured telephone answering service that uses kit numbers and passwords. For women who test positive for Chlamydia or gonorrhea, a referral is also provided to a local community health clinic for treatment, as part of the confirmation telephone message.

More than 500 kits are available as part of the initial pilot program. They are available at locations listed on the Web site: www.iwantthekit.org. The kits are contained in plain, brown-paper packaging meant to resemble a typical prescription. An advertising campaign in community newspapers, promoting the Web site, will accompany the study, expected to last six months.

Research shows that self-collected vaginal swabs are as effective as a doctor’s cervical exams for diagnosing STDs. Earlier focus groups suggested that young women preferred the privacy of home sampling and the convenience of picking up kits, at no cost, from either within their home community or through the Internet.

"Our hope is to provide young women with a safe and effective means for protecting their sexual reproductive health that is also easy to use," added Gaydos. "If this home-test kit works, we will have another tool in our efforts to reduce the spread of STDs through outreach tactics for disease prevention. We can also use these tests as an early-warning system to control future outbreaks - both locally and nationally."

According to the CDC, all people under the age of 25 who are also sexually active should be regularly screened for common STDs, such as Chlamydia and gonorrhea.

The pilot study was launched in Baltimore, Md., in part, because of the city’s high prevalence for STDs. In 2002, the last year for which statistics are available, Baltimore had the third highest incidence (new cases per year) for Chlamydia (at 6,267 cases, behind Detroit, Mich., and Richmond, Va.) and gonorrhea (at 4,873 cases, behind St. Louis, Mo., and Richmond, Va.)

| newswise
Further information:
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf

nachricht First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>