Reported STD Cases Reach New High in California, Health Officials Find

Frederick Owens
May 16, 2018

With more than 300,000 cases of all three diseases reported in the state in 2017, researchers counted 30 stillbirths resulting from congenital syphilis.

Rates of chlamydia are highest among young women, while men account for the majority of syphilis and gonorrhea cases.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) launched its latest national outdoor advertising and awareness campaign with new billboards raising an alarm and offering a 'Gonorrhea Alert' about drug-resistant strains of the sexually transmitted disease-including a case of what has been referred to as 'super gonorrhea' reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by physicians in the United Kingdom earlier this year.

CDPH noted that 2017 was the "fifth consecutive year for increases in the number of infants born with congenital syphilis", and that there were 278 congenital syphilis cases, including 30 stillbirths, in California last year.

"STDs are preventable by consistently using condoms, and many STDs can be cured with antibiotics", said Karen Smith, CDPH director and state public health officer.

The most reported STD was chlamydia, with 218,710 cases reported in 2017. This number is up from a year ago when Kern County had 6,344 reported cases.

Idaho health officials said one of the reasons for a sharp increase in STD rates could be that some dating apps can "facilitate anonymous sexual encounters, making partner notification, testing, and treatment for those with or exposed to STDs complicated and inadequate to reduce the spread of the disease". Chlamydia rates among girls and women were 60 percent higher than boys and men.

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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.

Here's what you should know about this record-breaking number.

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

"We've known how to control syphilis since the early 1900s".

Early syphilis, which includes the primary, secondary and early latent stages of the disease, reached the highest number of cases since 1987, the agency found.

Transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy or delivery, congenital syphilis can lead to premature birth, low birth weight, blindness, hearing loss and birth defects, among other issues, according to CDPH.

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