Prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis infection among adolescent males in a juvenile detention centre in Geneva
, A. S. Steiner1
, P. Sebo1
, J. M. Gaspoz1
, H. Wolf1
Introduction Young offenders represent a group for which Chlamydia trachomatis infection screening is recommended in the US. In the absence of local epidemiological data, it is difficult to assess the extent to which such recommendations apply to our context. We sought to address this gap in knowledge by providing estimates of Chlamydia trachomatis infection among males detained in a juvenile detention facility in Switzerland.
Methods This cross-sectional study was conducted between July 2008 and February 2009 within the primary care service of Geneva juvenile detention facility. Adolescents between the ages of 15 and 18 years admitted to the detention facility were invited to participate during a consultation with a nurse which took place within 48 hours of admission. Following informed consent, participants were asked to provide a first void urine sample for PCR detection of Chlamydia trachomatis infection. All participants also completed a questionnaire on socio-demographic characteristics and reproductive health behaviours.
Results 72 males (15 to 18 years) were considered for participation in the study. 13 were excluded (mainly due to language barrier or stay in the facility shorter than 3 days) and 9 (15%) declined participation. Not being sexually active was the most common reason for declining participation. Most of the remaining 50 participants originated from Switzerland or the European Union and 68% reported having two or more sexual partners in the past year. Only one participant had Chlamydia trachomatis infection (2%; 95%CI: 0-6%). This individual was 18 years old and asymptomatic.
Conclusions Despite being sexually active at a young age and reporting having multiple sexual partners in the past year, these adolescent males detained in a Swiss juvenile detention centre had a low prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis infection. In contrast to US recommendations our results do not support systematic screening of male adolescents upon admission to Swiss juvenile detention centres.