Patient-delivered partner therapy for sexually transmitted diseases as practiced by U.S. physicians

Sex Transm Dis. 2005 Feb;32(2):101-5. doi: 10.1097/01.olq.0000151417.43230.18.


Objective: The objective of this study was to estimate how many U.S. physicians practice patient-delivered partner therapy (PDPT), which is the practice of giving patients diagnosed with curable sexually transmitted infections medication to give to their sex partners.

Study: The authors conducted a national survey of physicians in specialties that diagnose the majority of sexually transmitted diseases in the United States.

Results: A total of 3011 physicians diagnosed at least 1 case of either gonorrhea or chlamydial infection in the preceding year. For gonorrhea and chlamydial infection, 50% to 56% reported ever using PDPT; 11% to 14% reported usually or always doing so. Obstetricians and gynecologists and family practice physicians more often used PDPT than internists, pediatricians, and emergency department physicians. Clinicians who collected sex partner information, as well as those who saw more female and white patients, used PDPT most often.

Conclusions: PDPT is widely but inconsistently used throughout the United States and is typically provided to a minority of persons.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anti-Infective Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Chlamydia Infections / drug therapy
  • Chlamydia Infections / prevention & control
  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • Drug Utilization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Gonorrhea / drug therapy
  • Gonorrhea / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / statistics & numerical data*
  • Sexual Partners*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / drug therapy
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / prevention & control*
  • United States / epidemiology


  • Anti-Infective Agents