STDs Hit Record High in California

Reported STDs Reach Record High in California

California hit record numbers of new infections of sexually transmitted diseases in 2017, with almost 300,000 cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis, according to a report by the state health department and published Monday.

Gonorrhea is one of the most commonly reported STDs in the United States, with more cases than syphilis but fewer cases than chlamydia.

See the CDPH's breakdown of the data here. Gonorrhea cases saw a 16 percent increase in the same time frame but affected twice as many men than women. But rates of more serious infections like syphilis have increased even more, especially among men, including a 20% overall increase from 2016.

"STDs are preventable by consistently using condoms, and many STDs can be cured with antibiotics", said CDPH Director Dr. Karen Smith. The billboards first appeared throughout Los Angeles starting the week of May 14 and then will be posted over the next two weeks in more than a dozen other cities and communities nationwide where AHF has operations.

Common among young people aged 15-24, gonorrhea can cause infections in the genitals, rectum, and throat.

Adding to the problem, says Dr. Heidi Bauer, chief of the state health department's STD Control Branch, is the fact that many Californians have been steered away from getting their health treatment at public clinics, and into private practice via the Affordable Care Act.

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"So in San Francisco, we recommend young women 25 and under get screened for chlamydia and gonorrhea every year with their provider".

California's Department of Public Health, Office of Public Affairs published a press release due to the alarming increase of STD's in the state of California. This was the highest number the state recorded since reporting began in 1990.

Syphilis is categorized as primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary- and each stage has different signs and symptoms.

The report showed there were 218,710 cases of chlamydia and 75,450 cases of gonorrhea previous year. It can occur after direct contact with a syphilis sore during sexual intercourse. Syphilis can result in blindness, hearing loss and neurologic problems. With 13,605 recorded cases, early syphilis reached its highest rate since 1987.

Since 2013, the number of babies in California born with congenital syphilis has more than quadrupled - to 278 past year.

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