For the second year in a row, reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis have reached the highest number ever, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
“Everybody who is sexually [active] is at risk for getting an STD,” said Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services. “Unless they are taking appropriate precautions to prevent it.”
That means wearing a condom properly every time or abstaining from sex. It also means making sure you know your sexual history and your sexual health, she said.
“For a lot of the sexually transmitted diseases such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, those are bacterial infections that can be treated with an antibiotic,” she said. “But there are STD’s that are more difficult to get rid of.”
For HIV there is medication to prevent it from getting worse, and for HPV there is a vaccine to prevent you from getting it. But once you get it, she said, we’re only able to treat the symptoms.
- Americans ages 15 to 24 years old accounted for nearly two-thirds of chlamydia diagnoses and half of gonorrhea diagnoses.
- Men who have sex with men (MSM) accounted for the majority of new gonorrhea and P&S syphilis cases (82 percent of male cases with known gender of sex partner). Antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea may be higher among MSM.
- Women’s rate of syphilis diagnosis increased by more than 27 percent from 2014 to 2015. Reported congenital syphilis (which occurs when the infection is transmitted from a pregnant woman to her baby) increased by 6 percent. Women still account for less than 10 percent of new P&S syphilis infections.
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