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The Need for Change: An Examination of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Chlamydia Screening Recommendations

Rosenfeld, Elian Aviraz (2011) The Need for Change: An Examination of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Chlamydia Screening Recommendations. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh.

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    Abstract

    Chlamydia trachomatis is a bacterial infection spread through sexual contact, including oral, anal and vaginal sex. This largely asymptomatic infection is highly prevalent in the United States and has been for the past 40 years: indeed, chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the United States. Left untreated, chlamydia can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), ectopic pregnancy, and infertility in women; complications are rare in men. Screening for this infection is necessary for its control and prevention and is a matter of great importance to public health. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend annual chlamydia screening for all sexually active women aged 25 years and younger, older women with risk factors (new sex partners or multiple sex partners), and all sexually active men who have sex with men (MSM). This thesis examines the history of the CDC's chlamydia screening recommendations, the implications of the CDC's recommendation that all sexually active young women be screened for the infection, and the barriers to following current chlamydia screening recommendations. Through a close analysis of available evidence, this thesis asserts that the CDC's chlamydia screening recommendations are inconsistent, have not been updated to align with current diagnostic testing developments, place the burden of the disease upon women, further stigmatize people who are marginalized, and most importantly, fail to include sexually active heterosexual young men, a population that transmits the infection to women. New chlamydia screening recommendations are necessary based on the lack of control over disease prevalence, the unequal burden of the disease on women, and the increased feasibility of diagnostic measures for men. Consequently, the CDC's guidelines should be updated. The guidelines should continue to recommend the annual screening of all sexually active women aged 25 and under and also recommend the annual screening of all sexually active young men aged 25 and under, as well as men and women over the age of 25 with risk factors.


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    Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
    ETD Committee:
    ETD Committee TypeCommittee MemberEmail
    Committee ChairMarx, Johnjmarx@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberTrauth, Jeanettetrauth@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberTerry, Martha Annmaterry@pitt.edu
    Title: The Need for Change: An Examination of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Chlamydia Screening Recommendations
    Status: Unpublished
    Abstract: Chlamydia trachomatis is a bacterial infection spread through sexual contact, including oral, anal and vaginal sex. This largely asymptomatic infection is highly prevalent in the United States and has been for the past 40 years: indeed, chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the United States. Left untreated, chlamydia can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), ectopic pregnancy, and infertility in women; complications are rare in men. Screening for this infection is necessary for its control and prevention and is a matter of great importance to public health. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend annual chlamydia screening for all sexually active women aged 25 years and younger, older women with risk factors (new sex partners or multiple sex partners), and all sexually active men who have sex with men (MSM). This thesis examines the history of the CDC's chlamydia screening recommendations, the implications of the CDC's recommendation that all sexually active young women be screened for the infection, and the barriers to following current chlamydia screening recommendations. Through a close analysis of available evidence, this thesis asserts that the CDC's chlamydia screening recommendations are inconsistent, have not been updated to align with current diagnostic testing developments, place the burden of the disease upon women, further stigmatize people who are marginalized, and most importantly, fail to include sexually active heterosexual young men, a population that transmits the infection to women. New chlamydia screening recommendations are necessary based on the lack of control over disease prevalence, the unequal burden of the disease on women, and the increased feasibility of diagnostic measures for men. Consequently, the CDC's guidelines should be updated. The guidelines should continue to recommend the annual screening of all sexually active women aged 25 and under and also recommend the annual screening of all sexually active young men aged 25 and under, as well as men and women over the age of 25 with risk factors.
    Date: 29 June 2011
    Date Type: Completion
    Defense Date: 28 March 2011
    Approval Date: 29 June 2011
    Submission Date: 21 April 2011
    Access Restriction: 5 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 5 years.
    Patent pending: No
    Institution: University of Pittsburgh
    Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
    Refereed: Yes
    Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
    URN: etd-04212011-164643
    Uncontrolled Keywords: chlamydia
    Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
    Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 14:40
    Last Modified: 29 May 2012 16:08
    Other ID: http://etd.library.pitt.edu/ETD/available/etd-04212011-164643/, etd-04212011-164643

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