Saturday, November 3, 2007

This presentation is part of : Healthcare Promotion Strategies
Assessing the Knowledge, Perceptions, and Practices of Young Condom Users
Debbie Kane, RN, PhD, Maher M. El-Masri, RN, PhD, and Susan M. Fox-Wasylyshyn, RN, PhD. Faculty of Nursing, University of Windsor, Windsor, ON, Canada
Learning Objective #1: learn about the sexual health beliefs among young adults
Learning Objective #2: learn about young adults knowledge of factors impacting condom durability

Background: In the absence of vaccination against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), use of condoms may be the most effective preventive tool. Although, condoms are tested for their pre-use durability, their in-use durability varies according to condom material. The literature suggests that condom research has focused on consumer attitudes toward the use of condoms, but little attention has been paid to consumers’ knowledge of the factors impacting condom durability, the potential health risks associated with the use of condoms, and the relationship between sexual behaviours and knowledge of condoms.
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the knowledge of young adult condom users regarding factors that impact their durability and the health risks associated with the use of condoms.

Method: A survey was administered to a random sample of 250 undergraduate university students. The survey was composed of 29 questions that were developed to collect data pertaining to sexual behaviours and concerns, use of condoms during sexual acts, and knowledge and behaviours pertaining to condom use.

Results: The results suggested that 83.6% (n = 209) of participants were sexually active. The majority (50.7%; n = 106) of participants became sexually active between 18 and 21 years. While pregnancy was a concern to 68.4% (n = 141) of participants, STI’s were a concern to only 35.8% (n = 73). In fact, more participants indicated using condoms to prevent pregnancy (86.4%; n = 165) than STI’s (74.5%; n = 143). Although 83.1% (n = 152) of participants reported believing that condom material impacts its protective effectiveness, only 51.6% (n = 96) consider material when selecting a condom.

 Conclusion: The findings of this study highlight that young adult condom users are not concerned about the factors that may impact condom durability as an effective tool for the prevention of STI’s.