Paired Testing of Sexually Transmitted Infections With Urine Pregnancy Tests in Incarcerated Women

Christine M. Dang, Julie Pao, Dena Taherzadeh, Ank E. Nijhawan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND: In correctional facilities, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are common, are often asymptomatic, and may lead to adverse outcomes such as infertility and increased HIV acquisition. In January 2020, testing for Neisseria gonorrhoeae (GC) and Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) was paired with routine urine pregnancy tests among women entering a large county jail to increase testing and detection of STIs. METHODS: The results of all GC/CT urine tests in the Dallas County Jail were collected from October 2019 to February 2020. Medical records were reviewed to collect demographic factors and to determine the positivity of GC/CT infections, time to results, and time to treatment. RESULTS: With paired testing, monthly testing rates increased 4.7-fold among incarcerated females from 125 to 589 tests without substantial change for males (174 to 163). The number of infections detected in females increased from 25 (7%) of 359 to 62 (5.3%) of 1171 for GC and 42 (11.2%) of 374 to 129 (11%) of 1177 for CT without a significant difference in GC (P = 0.23) or CT positivity (P = 0.66). Younger women (≤25 years) had the highest rates of CT (18.8% [66/350]), whereas GC was highest among women aged 31 to 35 years (9.9% [32/321]). Average time to results and treatment were 5.8 and 1.8 days, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Pairing GC/CT testing with routine urine pregnancy tests resulted in a large (4.7-fold) increase in the number of STI tests and a comparable increase (3.7- to 4.6-fold) in the number of infections detected. Future efforts should focus on incorporating STI testing into routine jail practices and expediting treatment to further improve outcomes in this vulnerable population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S20-S25
JournalSexually Transmitted Diseases
Volume48
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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