Though its symptoms may be considered minor in relation to other sexually transmitted diseases, syphilis has raised concern among scientists at the Centers for Disease Control. Among the general population, syphilis infections jumped 15 percent between 2013 and 2014. The growing scourge led the CDC to present its first study of syphilis transmission among gay men, Rates of Primary and Secondary Syphilis by State Among Men Who Have Sex With Men, at its 2016 STD Prevention Conference. The disease is treatable, though often ignored.
“CDC has tracked syphilis through the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System since 1944,” CDC epidemiologist and author of the study Alex de Voux Ph.D., says in an email. “Once nearly eliminated in the U.S., syphilis continues to increase among gay and bisexual men. Based on this data, we believe the number of reported cases of primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis among men who have sex wih men (MSM) has been increasing since at least 2001. Among states that reported sex of sex partner data for at least 70 percent of all cases from 2007 to 2014, cases among MSM increased nearly nine percent from 2013 to 2014, and 48 percent from 2010 to 2014.
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