Background: A syndromic approach has been advocated for identification and management of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in countries where diagnostic laboratory tests are not consistently available. A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted to discover the prevalence of STD syndromes in tribal population of central India.
Methods: All married men and women in the age group of 15–49 years from selected villages were enumerated by house-to-house visit. Individuals were interviewed using pre-coded, pre-tested questionnaires about STD syndromes of urethral discharge, vaginal discharge, dysurea, genital ulcer, inguinal swelling, scrotal swelling and lower abdominal pain.
Results: Of the 2568 individuals interviewed, 326 (12.7%) had at least one STD syndrome. The prevalence was almost double in women (17.6%) than in men (8.4%). The highest prevalence (16.2%) was observed in the age group 30–34 years followed by 35–39 years (14.7%). The commonest syndrome in women was vaginal discharge (16.0%) while in men the commonest syndrome was dysurea (1.8%).
Conclusion: The low level of STD syndromes among tribal populations offers an opportunity to prevent a potential epidemic in this disadvantaged community. As no baseline data are available, the findings form the basis for future work in this area.
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Funding This work was supported by financial grant from the Indian Council of Medical Research under Tribal Sub Plan.
Competing interests None declared.
Ethics approval The ethics committee of RMRCT approved the study.
Provenance and Peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.