Objective: To determine the specific impact on the incidence rate of some demographic and behavioral characteristics in outpatients with four bacterial sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
Study design: A cross-sectional hospital outpatient-based study was conducted from 1990 to 1996 on 1064 consecutive symptomatic STD cases (Chlamydia trachomatis, n = 375; gonorrhea, n = 369; early symptomatic syphilis, n = 288, and chancroid, n = 32) using a standardized questionnaire.
Results: In a reference STD population of 5831 symptomatic outpatients, the relative incidence of gonorrhea, syphilis and chancroid was found to be increased among immigrants. Low educational/socioeconomic level was also a significant incidence predictor. Older age characterized homo/bisexuals. The chlamydial infection detection rate was not affected by nationality, injecting drug use history or sexual orientation in males.
Conclusion: Innovative preventive and control strategies are needed among immigrants, older men having sex with men and injecting drug users, apart from those targeting the general population.