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Sexual Health

Sexual health: disparities and resources
According to the World Health Organization, sexual health is a state of physical, emotional, mental and social wellbeing in relation to sexuality. Optimal sexual health requires the ability of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination and violence. However, evidence from Wisconsin indicates that the state's LGBT youth may not have the same potential for positive sexual development as their peers. For example, when compared to their heterosexual counterparts:

LGBT youth are:

  • nearly twice as likely not to use a condom during sexual intercourse;
  • nearly 3 times as likely to have experienced forced sex; and
  • almost 4 times as likely to have their first sexual contact before the age of 13.

LGBT adults in Wisconsin are also at risk for experiencing impaired sexual health. For example, in a survey of men attending Milwaukee's 2005 Gay PrideFest, 13% of participants reported having an STD within the last year, with syphilis being the most common infection. Sixty percent of participants reported having had multiple male sexual partners over the last year, and over half of these reported having five or more male partners.

National data indicate that while the STD infection rates remain relatively low among lesbian women, rates of bacterial vaginosis and other STDs are more common among bisexual women than heterosexual women.

The following resources are intended to address sexual health issues and disparities affecting the LGBT community.

All external hyperlinks are provided for your information and for the benefit of the general public. The Department of Health Services does not testify to, sponsor, or endorse the accuracy of the information provided on externally linked pages.

Hyperlinks marked with the State icon icon indicate Wisconsin resources.

Brady East STD ClinicState icon
Description:
Sexually transmitted disease diagnosis and treatment, information, and prevention tips
Resource availability: Milwaukee

Fact sheet on men and HPV
Description:
CDC fact sheet on HPV among men, including an overview, statistics, and diagnosis and treatment information
Resource availability: Internet

General STD information
Description:
The CDC's webpage about STDs, including a testing site locator, statistics, and treatment guidelines
Resource availability:
Internet

STDs in Lesbian Populations
Description:
Information on STDs in lesbian populations published by the University of Washington, Seattle
Resource availability: Internet

Syphilis among MSM
Description:
CDC fact sheet about syphilis among men who have sex with men; includes statistics, diagnosis and treatment information, and prevention strategies
Resource availability: Internet

Viral Hepatitis in MSM
Description:
Information on viral hepatitis in gay men and MSM, including definitions, symptoms, and statistics, published by the CDC (downloadable)
Resource availability: Internet

Wisconsin HIV/STD/Hepatitis C Information and Referral CenterState icon
Description:
Information and service finder for STD diagnosis and treatment
Resource availability:
Wisconsin

Gay & Bisexual Men

Lesbian & Bisexual Women

Transgender Persons

LGBT Youth LGBT Older Persons Educators Service Providers

Last Revised: October 09, 2013