(Washington Post) — Diagnoses of sexually transmitted diseases hit a record high in California last year—with sometimes deadly consequences, according to preliminary state data.
More than 300,000 cases of gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis—the most common sexually transmitted bacterial infections—were reported in 2017. That represents a 45 percent increase since 2013 and the highest number since at least 1990, state Department of Public Health numbers show.
Some of those cases had tragic endings: Thirty of the 278 babies affected by congenital syphilis in 2017 were stillbirths, the highest number in 22 years. Congenital syphilis occurs when syphilis passes from a pregnant woman to her baby.
“Half of chlamydia and a third of gonorrhea cases are folks under age 25,” said Dr. Heidi Bauer, the state public health department’s chief of the Sexually Transmitted Diseases Control Branch.