Source: Getty Images

Syphilis Cases Spike Among Gay and Bisexual Men

Emell Adolphus READ TIME: 1 MIN.

Syphilis is soaring in the United States, and scientists might know why.

As reported by Metro Weekly, the United States is has seen over 200,000 syphilis cases annually, the highest since the 1950s.

"In the United States, syphilis was close to elimination in the 1990s, so we know it's possible to reverse this epidemic," said Dr. Jonathan Mermin, director of CDC's National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, stated.

The CDC's recently released 2022 STI surveillance report for 2022 saw an uptick in cases among gay men and bisexual men.

According to the CDC, these groups are "disproportionally impacted by STIs, including gonorrhea and [primary and secondary syphilis], and co-infection with HIV is common; in 2022, 36.4% of MSM with P&S syphilis were persons with diagnosed HIV."

To clarify, the CDC said that such a disparity is more likely caused by inaccessible quality sexual health care.

In the U.S., more than 207,000 syphilis cases were reported, representing an 80% increase since 2018. Additionally, the rate of congenital syphilis contraction has increased tenfold since 2012.

Addressing the alarming numbers, Health and Human Services secretary Xavier Becerra declared that a "syphilis crisis in our country is unacceptable."

In a press release, Becerra added that the Biden administration is taking steps to combat the rise in cases, including guidelines outlining how some gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men and transgender women could use the common antibiotic doxycycline to prevent the onset of syphilis, as well as gonorrhea and chlamydia.

by Emell Adolphus

Read These Next