Vaginal douching among Latina immigrants

Academic Article


  • Little is known about vaginal douching among Latina immigrants in the U.S. Understanding factors associated with douching is important due to the negative reproductive outcomes associated with this practice. This study examined demographic and behavioral factors associated with vaginal douching among Latina immigrants. A cross-sectional anonymous survey was administered among a convenience sample of 206 Latina immigrants aged 19-44 years (mean = 28 years) living in the U.S. at least 6 months (mean = 4 years). Demographic and behavioral characteristics, history of regular douching (at least once a month for 6 months), and current regular douching (at least once a month for the last 6 months) were assessed. Adjusted odds ratios (adj. OR) were estimated using multiple logistic regression. Overall, 25% (n = 50) of women reported ever douching regularly and 15% (n = 31) reported current regular douching. Ever douching regularly was significantly associated with a woman's number of lifetime sex partners (adj. OR = 1.6 per additional partner over one, 95% CI: 1.1-2.5), hormonal contraceptive use (adj. OR = 0.3, 95% CI: 0.1-0.9), and healthcare seeking behavior (adj. OR = 2.3, 95% CI: 1.1-5.2). Regular vaginal douching is a common practice among Latina immigrants. Factors associated with douching in this population vary from those in other U.S. populations and, therefore, it needs to be addressed in a culturally appropriate manner. © 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Redding KS; Funkhouser E; Garcés-Palacio IC; Person SD; Kempf MC; Scarinci IC
  • Start Page

  • 274
  • End Page

  • 282
  • Volume

  • 14
  • Issue

  • 2