JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and questioning youth: the importance of a sensitive and confidential sexual history in identifying the risk and implementing treatment for sexually transmitted infections

Marina Catallozzi, Bret J Rudy
Adolescent Medicine Clinics 2004, 15 (2): 353-67
15449849
STIs are one consequence of specific risk-taking behaviors, not sexual orientation. Providers who care for adolescents should be aware of the STIs for which LGBTQ youth are at risk and the necessary screening (see Table 1). Although it is vital to recognize that LGBTQ youth are at risk for STIs, it is important not to view the youth within this narrow perspective. LGBTQ youth, like all adolescents, should be appreciated for their individuality, idealism, and resiliency. Most LGBTQ youth emerge from adolescence as productive and healthy adults. Treating adolescents with understanding and respect and honoring confidentiality are integral to the physical and emotional health of young people dealing with sexual-identity issues. Understanding the process of sexual-identity formation is the first step in gaining knowledge and perspective about young people with sexual-identity issues and helping them reduce their risk for contracting STIs. Physicians caring for adolescents should consult recent comprehensive reviews to improve their understanding of the issues LGBTQ youth may encounter.

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