Most sexually active teenage girls know relatively little about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) until it is too late, according to a paper by Carnegie Mellon University researchers that will be published in the January edition of the Journal of Adolescent Health.
"For the most part kids learn about sexually transmitted diseases when they are getting diagnosed with them," said Julie Downs, lead author of the study and a member of the Department of Social and Decision Sciences at Carnegie Mellon.
The results came from a survey of 300 adolescent girls in the Pittsburgh area. The researchers gave the girls a test to gauge their knowledge of eight STDs: HIV/AIDS, chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital herpes, genital warts, hepatitis B, trichomoniasis and syphilis. Girls who reported having been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease knew more about that particular disease than other girls, but did not know more about the other diseases. On average, with the exception of HIV/AIDS, the teens did not know many basic facts about STDs.
Jonathan Potts | EurekAlert!
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