1A 2 Does It Always Take Two to Tango? Sex Partner Characteristics Among Persons with Gonorrhea in the STD Surveillance Network (SSuN), 2010 2012

Tuesday, June 10, 2014: 10:55 AM
Grand Ballroom A/B/C/D1
Mark Stenger, MA, DSTDP/Surveillance and Data Management Branch, CDC, Atlanta, GA, Greta Anschuetz, MPH, STD Control Program, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Philadelphia, PA, Kyle T. Bernstein, PhD, ScM, STD Prevention and Control Section, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, CA, Margaret Eaglin, MPH, City of Chicago Department of Public Health, Chicago, IL, Preeti Pathela, DrPH, MPH, Bureau of STD Control and Prevention, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Long Island City, NY, Lynn Sosa, MD, STD Control Program, Connecticut Department of Public Health, Hartford, CT, Mary Reed, MPH, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, CO, Michael Samuel, DrPH, STD Control Branch, California Department of Public Health, Richmond, CA, Christina Schumacher, PhD, Department of Pediatrics, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, Julie Simon, MSPH, Assessment Unit, Office of Infectious Disease, Disease Control and Health Statistics Division, Washington State Department of Health, Olympia, WA, Jeff Stover, MPH, Division of Disease Prevention - Health informatics & Integrated Surveillance Systems, Virginia Department of Health, Richmond, VA, Megan Jespersen, MPH, Infectious Disease Epidemiology Program, LA Office of Public Health, New Orleans, LA, Eloisa Llata, MD, MPH, Division of STD Prevention/Surevillance and Data Management Branch, CDC, Atlanta, GA and Hillard S. Weinstock, MD, MPH, Division of STD Prevention/Surveillance and Data Management Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

Background:  Little is known about the characteristics of sex partners among persons diagnosed with gonorrhea.  Population-level characteristics of recent partnerships are useful for understanding transmission pattern differences for specific populations and for developing targeted gonorrhea control activities.

Methods:  A random sample of cases reported in 2010–2012 was identified and patients interviewed in 12 geographically diverse areas collaborating in SSuN.  Data were weighted to provide overall estimates of partnership characteristics among persons reported with gonorrhea. The number and gender of sex partners reported in the previous three months and the age, race and Hispanic ethnicity of the most recent sex partner (MRSP) were ascertained.  Differences by index patient characteristics were described.

Results:  Of 218,189 reported cases, 15,014 (6.9%) were interviewed. Among all cases, the mean number of partners reported in the previous three months was 2.5 (95% CI 2.4–2.7), the proportion reporting that their MRSP was within five years of their own age was 68.4% (95% CI 66.6–70.2) and proportion reporting MRSP of the same race/ethnicity was 68.1% (95% CI  66.2–69.9). Significant differences were observed by gender of sex partner status and race/ethnicity.  Men-who-have-sex-with-men (MSM) had more partners in the previous three months than heterosexuals (means= 4.4 vs. 1.9, p<0.0001), were more likely than heterosexuals to report MRSP of different race and/or ethnicity (36.7% vs. 20.1%, p<0.0001) and more likely than heterosexuals to report MRSP more than five years older/younger (37.8% vs. 19.1%, P<0.0001). Among heterosexuals, non-Hispanic blacks were less likely than others to report MRSP of different race (10.4% vs. 39.0% p<0.0001) and less likely than others to report MRSP more than five years older/younger (17.6% vs. 21.6%, P=0.03).

Conclusions: Number and characteristics of recent sex partners vary significantly by MSM status and by race/Hispanic ethnicity. These findings are consistent with, and may help to explain, observed incidence patterns.