More than 1 million people a day get a sexually transmitted infection, WHO says
2019-06-10 from cbc.ca
More than a million people worldwide catch a sexually transmitted infection every day, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday.
Four infections — chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis and syphilis — account for a combined total of more than 376 million new cases annually, the WHO said in a report.
The vast majority of the infections are easily preventable and curable, the organization said, but some diseases, especially gonorrhea, are evolving into superbug forms that are increasingly difficult to treat with antibiotics.
"Sexually transmitted infections are everywhere. They are far more common than we think," said Teodora Wi, a medical officer in the WHO's department for reproductive health and research.
The report, based on 2016 global data — the most recent available — showed 127 million new cases of chlamydia that year, along with 87 million cases of gonorrhea, six million cases of syphilis and 156 million cases of trichomoniasis among men and women aged 15 to 49.
Sexually transmitted infections, or STIs, are a "persistent and endemic health threat worldwide" and have a profound impact on both adult and child health, the WHO said.
If left untreated, they can lead to serious and chronic health effects that include neurological and cardiovascular disease, infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirths and an increased risk of HIV.
Syphilis alone caused an estimated 200,000 stillbirths and newborn deaths in 2016, making it one of the leading causes of baby loss globally, the research said.
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