According to new data from CDC, there has been a big increase in STD (sexually transmitted disease) cases in the U.S. for the fourth time in a row. Last year, as much as 2.3 million STD diagnoses have been made in the U.S., while in 2016 there were around 2.1 million cases. Therefore, 2017 has been the fourth successive year when such a significant increase was recorded.
What is the new data telling us
The data from CDC shows that there has been an increase in gonorrhea cases by 67% and the diagnoses for men were almost twice as many as those from 2016. When it comes to chlamydia, this seems to be the most reported STD, as there were 1.7 million cases recorded only in 2017, with nearly half of them being from females that are between 15 and 24 years old. Also, a 76% increase in primary and secondary syphilis diagnoses has been noted, with gay and bisexual people comprising about 70% of all cases.
What are the main concerns
Even though the causes of these STDs, syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia, can be treated with antibiotics, there are still numerous cases that are left without a diagnosis and thus are not being treated. This can lead to various serious health problems, such as infertility, ectopic pregnancies and an increased HIV risk.
One of the main concerns would be that due to the increase in STD cases, the threat of antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea is also rising, as it seems that soon only one antibiotic will be probably left to treat it effectively: ceftriaxone. Recent findings from CDC show that gonorrhea is becoming resistant to azithromycin – rising from 1% in 2013 to 4% in 2017. There seems to be an urgent need to find further treatment options for gonorrhea.