Background: Prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis and risk factors for infection are not well described in male college students enrolled in the Reserved Officer Training Corps (ROTC).
Goal: The goal was to determine prevalence of C. trachomatis infection, percentage of asymptomatic infections, and risk factors for infection in a population of male college ROTC students.
Study Design: We conducted a prevalence survey of C. trachomatis infection and risk factors using urine ligase chain reaction and questionnaire. Participants were 1443 ROTC male college cadets at Ft. Lewis, Washington, from June to July 2001.
Results: Prevalence of C. trachomatis infection was 31 of 1252 (2.48%); 93.6% of the infections were asymptomatic. Black race, exposure to a partner with a prior sexually transmitted disease, and self-reported symptoms were significant risk factors.
Conclusions: The prominence of asymptomatic infection in a male population with comparatively low prevalence suggests that risk factor rather than clinically based screening could be beneficial in this population.