The CDC announced Tuesday that 2.29 million cases of chlamydia, syphilis, and gonorrhea had been diagnosed in the US throughout 2017-an increase of more than 200,000 cases over 2016.
Almost 2.3 million STDs were diagnosed previous year, which is a record number. Prevention efforts have also stagnated, and people are using condoms less frequently, said one expert. It's less clear whether dating apps, like Tinder, have contributed in some way to the spread of STDs, though some researchers think they have.
"We are sliding backward", said Jonathan Mermin, director of the CDC's National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention.
The federal health agency said in a report released Tuesday that the numbers reflect a "steep, sustained increase" in STDs since 2013. The CDC say gonorrhea diagnoses have jumped 67 percent in four years, while the prevalence of syphilis increased by approximately 76 percent between 2013 and 2017.
Nearly half - 45 percent - of chlamydia diagnoses were among 15- to 24-year-old females. A report has found that cases of syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea have spiked for the fourth year in a row.
"They realize that their sites could be stigmatized for being associated with STDs".
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Gonorrhea cases in men almost doubled to 322,169 in 2017 compared with 2013, the CDC said.
The CDC notes that these STDs are curable with antibiotics but often go undiagnosed and untreated, which can lead to severe health problems, including infertility.
Public health experts are also concerned about antibiotic resistant gonorrhea.
Emerging resistance to ceftriaxone has not been seen since the dual therapy approach was implemented, and there has not yet been a confirmed treatment failure in the United States when using this recommended therapy.
The finding adds concerns that azithromycin-resistant genes in some gonorrhea could crossover into strains of gonorrhea with reduced susceptibility to ceftriaxone - and that a strain of gonorrhea may someday surface that does not respond to ceftriaxone.