[Contraceptives, HIV, and other sexually transmitted diseases].Ginecol Obstet Mex. 1995 Jan; 63:40-5.GO
The large majority of women who acquire Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are in their childbearing years and are current or potential users of contraceptive methods. Certain STDs augment women's risk for HIV due to damage which these diseases produce in the integrity of the epithelial lining of the vagina and the vulva. There also exists evidence that some contraceptive methods, such as the intrauterine device and certain hormonal products, may increase the risk of HIV and other STDs. Condoms and spermicides offer good levels of protection against these diseases, but are not highly effective contraceptives. The interrelations among these risks are important and create a great problem for women's reproductive health. Moreover, the high vulnerability of the female population for these diseases is also related to a variety of social factors which are referred to as gender relations (power of females in society relative to that of females). Among the gender-related inequalities which affect women are their lack of power to successfully control many aspects of sexual relations. Another problem has to do with the fact that there are no highly reliable female controlled methods for preventing infection by HIV and other STDs. Improvement in the reproductive health care of women depends on the development of new disease prevention products and structural changes in the delivery of care, as well as continued research efforts on the interrelations among contraceptive methods, HIV and other STD.