Vaginal yeast colonisation, prevalence of vaginitis, and associated local immunity in adolescents

M. M. Barousse, B. J. Van Der Pol, J. Fortenberry, D. Orr, P. L. Fidel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Objectives: To evaluate point prevalence vaginal yeast colonisation and symptomatic vaginitis in middle adolescents and to identify relation of these yeast conditions with reproductive hormones, sexual activity, sexual behaviours, and associated local immunity. Methods: Middle adolescent females (n = 153) were evaluated for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), asymptomatic yeast colonisation, and symptomatic vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) by standard criteria. Also evaluated were local parameters, including vaginal associated cytokines, chemokines, and antibodies, vaginal epithelial cell antifungal activity, and Candida specific peripheral blood lymphocyte responses. Correlations between yeast colonisation/vaginitis and local immunomodulators, reproductive hormones, douching, sexual activity, condom use, and STIs were identified. Results: Rates of point prevalence asymptomatic yeast colonisation (22%) were similar to adults and similarly dominated by Candida albicans, but with uncharacteristically high vaginal yeast burden. In contrast with the high rate of STIs (18%), incidence of symptomatic VVC was low (<2%). Immunological properties included high rates of Candida specific systemic immune sensitisation, a Th2 type vaginal cytokine profile, total and Candida specific vaginal antibodies dominated by IgA, and moderate vaginal epithelial cell anti-Candida activity. Endogenous reproductive hormones were in low concentration. Sexual activity positively correlated with vaginal yeast colonisation, whereas vaginal cytokines (Th1, Th2, proinflammatory), chemokines, antibodies, contraception, douching, or condom use did not. Conclusion: Asymptomatic vaginal yeast colonisation in adolescents is distinct in some ways with adults, and positively correlates with sexual activity, but not with local immunomodulators or sexual behaviours. Despite several factors predictive for VVC, symptomatic VVC was low compared to STIs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-53
Number of pages6
JournalSexually Transmitted Infections
Volume80
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2004

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Vaginitis
Immunity
Yeasts
Vulvovaginal Candidiasis
Sexual Behavior
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Candida
Therapeutic Irrigation
Immunologic Factors
Condoms
Hormones
Cytokines
Chemokines
Antibodies
Epithelial Cells
Candida albicans
Contraception
Immunoglobulin A
Lymphocytes
Incidence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Immunology

Cite this

Vaginal yeast colonisation, prevalence of vaginitis, and associated local immunity in adolescents. / Barousse, M. M.; Van Der Pol, B. J.; Fortenberry, J.; Orr, D.; Fidel, P. L.

In: Sexually Transmitted Infections, Vol. 80, No. 1, 02.2004, p. 48-53.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Barousse, M. M. ; Van Der Pol, B. J. ; Fortenberry, J. ; Orr, D. ; Fidel, P. L. / Vaginal yeast colonisation, prevalence of vaginitis, and associated local immunity in adolescents. In: Sexually Transmitted Infections. 2004 ; Vol. 80, No. 1. pp. 48-53.
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abstract = "Objectives: To evaluate point prevalence vaginal yeast colonisation and symptomatic vaginitis in middle adolescents and to identify relation of these yeast conditions with reproductive hormones, sexual activity, sexual behaviours, and associated local immunity. Methods: Middle adolescent females (n = 153) were evaluated for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), asymptomatic yeast colonisation, and symptomatic vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) by standard criteria. Also evaluated were local parameters, including vaginal associated cytokines, chemokines, and antibodies, vaginal epithelial cell antifungal activity, and Candida specific peripheral blood lymphocyte responses. Correlations between yeast colonisation/vaginitis and local immunomodulators, reproductive hormones, douching, sexual activity, condom use, and STIs were identified. Results: Rates of point prevalence asymptomatic yeast colonisation (22{\%}) were similar to adults and similarly dominated by Candida albicans, but with uncharacteristically high vaginal yeast burden. In contrast with the high rate of STIs (18{\%}), incidence of symptomatic VVC was low (<2{\%}). Immunological properties included high rates of Candida specific systemic immune sensitisation, a Th2 type vaginal cytokine profile, total and Candida specific vaginal antibodies dominated by IgA, and moderate vaginal epithelial cell anti-Candida activity. Endogenous reproductive hormones were in low concentration. Sexual activity positively correlated with vaginal yeast colonisation, whereas vaginal cytokines (Th1, Th2, proinflammatory), chemokines, antibodies, contraception, douching, or condom use did not. Conclusion: Asymptomatic vaginal yeast colonisation in adolescents is distinct in some ways with adults, and positively correlates with sexual activity, but not with local immunomodulators or sexual behaviours. Despite several factors predictive for VVC, symptomatic VVC was low compared to STIs.",
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