For some STDs, such as chlamydia, adolescent females may have increased susceptibility to infection because of increased cervical ectopy. Cervical ectopy refers to columnar cells, which are typically found within the cervical canal, located on the outer surface of the cervix. Although this is a normal finding in adolescent and young women, these cells are more susceptible to infection. The higher prevalence of STDs among adolescents may also reflect multiple barriers to accessing quality STD prevention and management services, including inability to pay, lack of transportation, long waiting times, conflict between clinic hours and work and school schedules, embarrassment attached to seeking STD services, method of specimen collection, and concerns about confidentiality e.
Sexual Risk Behaviors: HIV, STD, & Teen Pregnancy Prevention
According to the World Health Organization WHO , more than 1 million sexually transmitted infections are acquired every day worldwide. Women are more vulnerable to infection than men because of their anatomy. In addition, in many cases, the consequences of untreated STDs are worse for women than for men. Untreated chlamydia , for example, can spread to the uterus and fallopian tubes, where it can cause pelvic inflammatory disease , potentially leading to chronic pelvic pain and infertility.