Daily Mail Online – UPDATED: 10:47 EST, 2 November 2012
LA porn stars have significantly higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) than legal prostitutes working in Nevada, according to a report published this week.
A study of 168 adult film performers in Los Angeles County found that 28%, or 47 performers, tested positive for either gonorrhea or chlamydia or both.
The study said that in the adult industry, ‘undiagnosed asymptomatic… STIs were common and are likely reservoirs for transmission to sexual partners inside and outside the workplace.’
The report was conducted in 2010 and written by six public health experts affiliated with the LA County Department of Public Health, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and UCLA.
Sexually transmitted infection rates among legal prostitutes are negligible in Nevada as brothel workers are required by state law to use condoms and are tested weekly for disease.
In contrast, there have been eight HIV cases among adult film performers since 2004. In 2011, porn production halted for a week after an actor tested positive for HIV. In August of this year, there was a 10-day moratorium on porn filming because of a syphilis outbreak among actors.
The report found that there was ‘very low’ consistent condom use among study participants, either on set or in their personal lives.
‘The results of this study suggest that many performers in the [adult film industry] are not safe on the job from acquiring and transmitting [sexually transmitted infections] at multiple anatomical sites,’ the report concluded.
‘Repeated and chronic infection with [sexually transmitted infections] can lead to infertility, chronic pelvic pain and ectopic pregnancies, and can facilitate HIV infection.’
STD Trends in the United States
- There are 19 million new infections every year in the U.S. STDs cost the U.S. health care system $17 billion every year.
- Young people account for nearly half of new STDs.
- The five most common STD’s are Genital Herpes (HSV), Genital Warts (HPV), Trichomonas, Chlamydia, and Hepatitis B
The authors also said that many adult film performers may not even be aware of infection.
The study was published a week before voters in Los Angeles will go to the polls to consider Measure B, which would require adult film performers to wear condoms during filming.
The initiative, sponsored by the LA-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation, says that porn performers need to be protected from HIV and sexually transmitted disease, and the issue is a matter of protecting public health.
Many in the porn industry say that condoms are unnecessary because the industry already conducts regular STD checks and that prolonged condom use causes chafing, tearing and increased risk of disease.
They also say that condoms would hurt their profit and drive the industry either out of LA or underground, creating even more unsafe conditions.