Gonorrhea prevalence in the maryland state prisons

Edward F. Ellerbeck, David Vlahov, Joseph P. Libonati, Marcel E. Salive, T. Fordham Brewer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


During a 6-month period from July 1 through December 31, 1986, 2,598 consecutive men were screened for gonorrhea upon entry into the Maryland Division of Corrections. Twenty-eight men (1.1%) demonstrated positive cultures for gonorrhea with 27 of them (92%) asymptomatic. This prevalence is substantially lower than other rates reported from prisons and detention centers. Although the role of asymptomatic males as a reservoir for gonorrhea has been well delineated, standard recommendations for screening high-risk male populations such as prison inmates have not been established. These data suggest that screening in some correctional facilities may not be cost-effective given the low prevalence observed. In addition, contact tracing may be delayed by long holding periods in local detention facilities prior to transfer to the state prison system. These data underscore the need for additional analysis to determine the most effective program structure for screening in correctional facilities and detention centers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-167
Number of pages3
JournalSexually transmitted diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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