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A study on knowledge about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and AIDS among adolescents of rural areas of Jabalpur district

Shubhangi Nayak, Neelam A Toppo, Shashi P Tomar, Pradeep Kumar Kasar, Rajesh Tiwari.


Background: Adolescence is defined by the United Nations as the period of life from age 10 to 19 years. It is a significant period in an individual’s changeover from childhood to adulthood. In 2009, there were 1.2 billion adolescents aged 10–19 years in the world accounting for 18% of the world’s population.

Objective: To assess the knowledge of adolescents about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in rural areas of Jabalpur district.

Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in schools and anganwadis of rural areas of Jabalpur district. A total of 400 adolescents (200 boys and 200 girls) were randomly selected as study subjects. For obtaining quantitative data, a predesigned questionnaire was used. For obtaining qualitative data, two focus group discussions were conducted.

Result: In our study, less than 50% of adolescents were aware of the signs and symptoms of STI in rural areas. About 35.7% adolescents knew that STIs are curable, and 18.5% knew that many persons with STI do not show symptoms. About 53% boys and 42% girls had heard about AIDS.

Conclusion: This study has reflected poor level of knowledge regarding STI and AIDS in rural areas.

Key words: Adolescents, sexually transmitted infections (STI), acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), focus group discussions (FGD)

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