We sought to determine whether the interval between menarche and age of first sexual intercourse is associated with subsequent human papilloma virus (HPV) infection and if so, whether the association is independent of the age of first sexual intercourse. Female university students completed a survey and were screened for cervicovaginal HPV infection. HPV-positive subjects were matched to HPV-negative subjects (n = 504). Mean subject age was 20.4 +/- 2.1 years, age of first sexual intercourse 16.7 +/- 1.8 years, and interval 4.4 +/- 2.0 years. The interval was associated with HPV infection, but the association became nonsignificant in univariate stratified analyses and multivariate models estimating the association between the interval and HPV infection. A short interval is associated with HPV infection, but the association is not independent of age of first sexual intercourse. Age of first sexual intercourse should be considered an important and identifiable risk factor for subsequent HPV infection in research and clinical settings.