STDs hit all-time highs in USA for fourth straight year, CDC reports

STDs hit all-time highs in USA for fourth straight year, CDC reports

Cases of gonorrhea, syphilis and chlamydia all increased in 2017, making it the fourth straight year in which STD infections continued to rise. Almost 2.3 million cases of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia were diagnosed in 2017, according to the CDC.

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"We are sliding backward", said Jonathan Mermin, director of the CDC's National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention. One CDC director says there have been "steep and sustained increases" in sexually transmitted diseases over the past five years, a "very concerning" trend that hasn't been seen in two decades. And it manifests itself in many ways, including this public health crisis.

Primary and secondary syphilis, of which there were 30,644 diagnoses in 2017, represented a 76 percent increase. This featured a doubling of cases among men, but the CDC explains that "increases in diagnoses among women - and the speed with which they are increasing - are also concerning", adding that this is the third consecutive year that cases have risen.

"They realize that their sites could be stigmatized for being associated with STDs". Around 70 percent of the cases featured gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men.

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Diagnosed cases of gonorrhea increased 67 percent from 333,004 to 555,608 and almost doubled among men, rising from 169,130 to 322,169. Nearly half of chlamydia cases were in girls and women ages 15 to 24.

The three highlighted diseases are treatable, but the report said most go undiagnosed, which can lead to infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirth and an increased HIV risk.

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The spike has also been blamed on lower condom usage and antibiotic-resistant strains of diseases.

It began recommending healthcare providers prescribe a single shot of ceftriaxone along with an oral dose of azithromycin - a prescription medication used to treat bacterial infections - to treat gonorrhea in 2015, in order to help delay the development of resistance to ceftriaxone.

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