Condom Use During Anal Intercourse Low Among American Women
2016 Membership Renewal
About 36% of American women have had heterosexual anal intercourse (HAI) in the past, U.S. scientists say. But condom use during such encounters is low.
The study, published online in August in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, included information from the National Survey of Family Growth.
Over 10,000 women between the ages of 15 and 44 responded to questions about HAI.
Over a third said they'd had HAI at some point in their lives. About 13% had engaged in HAI during the previous year.
Compared to vaginal intercourse, however, condom use was lower. Almost 27% of the women had used a condom at their last vaginal intercourse, but only 16% had done so at their last HAI.
Anal sex puts women at high risk for contacting sexually-transmitted infections, including HIV. The anus may develop small cuts and does not produce a protective discharge like the vagina does.
Women may not think condoms are needed during anal sex, as they cannot become pregnant that way.
Clinicians should ask their patients about all types of sexual activities and make sure they know how to have safe sex.
“Discussion regarding anal intercourse should also include emphasis on the need for continued condom use for HIV/STI prevention,” they wrote.
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