California STDs Rates At An All-Time High

Highest-ever number of STDs recorded in US last year

Washington, Sep 27 (PTI) Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) reached an all time high in the U.S. past year, with over two million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis reported in the country, health officials said today.

The annual Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance analysis showed that 1.6 million Americans were newly infected with chlamydia, 470,000 had gonorrhea and about 28,000 people were infected with primary and secondary syphilis.

There were 2 million cases overall. Of the 7 percent of syphilis cases diagnosed among women, the sharpest increases over the previous year have been among African-American and Latinas.

Meanwhile, increasing cases of gonorrhea and syphilis suggest that these diseases are affecting new populations. The CDC called the trend alarming in light of the growing threat of drug resistant strains of gonorrhea.

While both men and women saw an increase in gonorrhea cases, researchers saw the greatest increase among males, particular gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men. Gonorrhea increased among men and women, with the largest increase among men (22 percent); a large proportion occurred among MSM.

Los Angeles County is experiencing sharper increases in gonorrhea and congenital syphilis cases than in California, while the increases in chlamydia and syphilis cases has been increasing at a higher rate statewide.

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More than 600 such cases were reported a year ago.

Health officials have said better testing and diagnosis have helped increased detection of cases, but treatment and prevention programs have been hurt by budget cuts.

Those infection can be managed with antibiotics, but can lead to infertility and other problems if left untreated.

STDs are on the rise in the USA, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

For now though, Dr. Mermin warned that "STDs are a persistent enemy, growing in number, and outpacing our ability to respond". "Getting tested regularly is one of the most important steps". Half of the men in those two groups also had HIV, according to the report. In addition, providers should make STD screening and timely treatment a standard part of medical care. "Ironically, HIV is an STD, but we have a very visible community who advocates and works to tell stories about the impact of HIV on people's lives".

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