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Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 11(4)

Assessment of psychosocial impact of genital warts among patients in Singapore

Lucinda S. Tan A , Martin T. W. Chio A , Priya Sen A , Yong Kuei Lim B , Joseph Ng C , Arunachalam Ilancheran C , Jeffrey J. Low C , Yen Shing Yeoh D , Roy K. Chan A D and Nan Luo D E

A National Skin Centre, 1 Mandalay Road Singapore 308205.
B Department of Gynaecological Oncology, Kandang Kerbau Women’s and Children’s Hospital, 100 Bukit Timah Road, Singapore 229899.
C Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, National University Hospital, 5 Lower Kent Ridge Road, Singapore 119074.
D Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore & National University Health System, 16 Medical Drive, Block MD3, Singapore 117597.
E Corresponding author. Email: nan_luo@nuhs.edu.sg

Sexual Health 11(4) 313-318 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/SH13189
Submitted: 6 December 2013  Accepted: 28 May 2014   Published: 4 August 2014

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Background: Genital warts (GW) are a common sexually transmissible infection (STI) among young adults and are associated with poor quality of life (QoL). We investigated the functional and psychosocial effect of GW on Singaporean patients and evaluated for any variations in QoL between genders. Methods: Patients with GW completed a standard questionnaire containing the Short Form-36 (SF-36) health survey and the Cuestionario Específico para Condiloma Acuminado in a cross-sectional survey. QoL deficits were determined by comparing the SF-36 scores with local population norms. Variations in SF-36 (norm-based) scores among patients with different characteristics were examined using multiple linear regressions. All data analyses were performed for male and female patients separately. Results: The mean age of male (n = 100) and female patients (n = 80) was 31 years. The typical patient profile was male, ethnic Chinese, single, tertiary education level and presenting with recurrent warts and a history of prior STIs. Compared with the general population, male patients had similar or better functioning and wellbeing, whereas female patients had lower levels of productivity, mental health and general health. Among male patients, individuals afflicted with their first episode of GW and currently with a partner had better QoL. In contrast, for females, tertiary education, older age and being a nonsmoker were positively associated with better QoL. Conclusions: Patients with GW have a significant psychosocial burden, with differences in certain aspects of QoL between genders. We hope that with active intervention, we will be able to mitigate the associated negative impact to QoL.

Additional keywords: gender, health-related quality of life, human papillomavirus, patients’ views


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