Family socioeconomic status and self-reported sexually transmitted diseases among black and white american adolescents

Sex Transm Dis. 2004 Sep;31(9):533-41. doi: 10.1097/01.olq.0000137898.17919.35.


Objective: The objective of this study was to assess associations between socioeconomic status (SES) and adolescent sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) stratified by race and gender.

Study: In cross-sectional analyses of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health Wave One (1995), unadjusted and adjusted associations between 4 family SES indicators and STD reports for black and white 7th through 12th graders were examined.

Results: Lower maternal education and nonprofessional maternal occupations were associated with higher STD reports in all groups except white females. Generally, STD reports were higher for adolescents not living in 2-parent homes, and lower income was only associated for black males.

Conclusion: Overall, SES is only a weak to moderate marker for adolescent STD risks. The relationship of SES and STDs varies by the SES measure used and differs across race-gender groups. Other individual factors such as risk behaviors or community factors such as income inequality could play a more critical role for adolescent STDs than family SES.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior*
  • Adult
  • Black People / statistics & numerical data*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Family
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Self-Assessment
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / ethnology
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / etiology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • White People / statistics & numerical data*