HPV vaccination and sexual behavior in a community college sample.
- Author(s): Marchand, Erica
- Glenn, Beth A
- Bastani, Roshan
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3823717/
Many US parents are concerned that vaccinating daughters against human papillomavirus (HPV) will communicate implicit approval for sexual activity and be associated with early or risky sexual behavior (Scarinci et al. in J Womens Health 16(8):1224-1233, 2007; Schuler et al. in Sex Transm Infect 87:349-353, 2011). The aims of this study were to understand (a) whether the HPV vaccine was associated with risky sexual behavior among a diverse sample of female adolescents and young adults, and (b) to better understand the chronology of HPV vaccination and sexual behavior. An anonymous web-based survey was used to collect data from 114 female community college students. T test and Chi square analyses were used to compare vaccinated and unvaccinated groups on age at first intercourse and proportion who had ever had sexual intercourse. Linear multiple regression was used to predict frequency of condom use and number of sexual partners in the past year, using vaccination status and demographic factors as predictors. About 38% reported receiving at least one dose of the HPV vaccine. Many of those vaccinated (45%) received the vaccine after having initiated sexual activity. The proportion of women who were sexually experienced did not differ by HPV vaccine status, nor did age at first intercourse, number of partners in the past year, or frequency of condom use. Current findings suggest that HPV vaccination is not associated with riskier sexual activity for the young women in this sample. Adolescents and their parents may benefit from education about the need to receive the HPV vaccine before onset of sexual activity.