California: San Francisco Sees Spike in STDs
February 13, 2012
Preliminary city data show an increase in reports for several STDs last year for the sixth straight year. It is unclear whether the continued climb represents an increase in risky behavior or reflects the Department of Public Health (DPH)'s push to get more people tested for STDs. In the past, health officials have suggested a lack of condom use among gay and bisexual men who use serosorting as an HIV prevention measure could account for rising STD rates among men.
Gonorrhea cases increased from 1,943 in 2010 to 2,243 last year, an increase of 15.4 percent compared with 2010's 8.6 percent increase. Chlamydia cases grew from 4,603 two years ago to 4,741 last year, a 3 percent gain compared with a 10 percent jump in 2010.
Male rectal gonorrhea cases increased from 479 in 2010 to 622 last year -- a 38.2 percent increase, compared with a 6.3 percent rise two years ago. Male rectal chlamydia cases increased nearly 5 percent to 959 -- well below the 23.4 percent increase in 2010, when the city logged 914 cases. Early syphilis cases rose from 659 in 2010 to 682 in 2011 -- a 3.5 percent increase, compared to the 26.4 percent increase in 2010.
The city's STD chief, Dr. Susan Philip, did not comment by press time on the 2011 data, which are unofficial and came from the San Francisco Monthly STD Report. Final DPH data will be published later this year in the 2011 Annual Summary.
Bay Area Reporter (San Francisco)
02.09.2012; Matthew S. Bajko
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