One Million New STD’s Contracted Every Day, WHO Warns
“STIs have a profound impact on the health of adults and children worldwide. If untreated, they can lead to serious and chronic health effects that include neurological and cardiovascular disease, infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirths, and increased risk of HIV.” – WHO
The World Health Organization (WHO) warned in a statement released Thursday, June 6, that more than one million people around the globe are inflicted every day with a new but curable sexually-transmitted disease. That amounts to approximately one in 25 persons globally having at least one sexually transmitted disease.
The WHO’s report highlighted that the majority of the diseases could be prevented and easily treated, but cautioned that some are evolving rapidly and becoming resistant to antibiotic drugs, particularly gonorrhea.
“Rapidly increasing antimicrobial resistance to gonorrhea treatments is also a growing health threat, and may lead eventually to the disease being impossible to treat,” the report stated.
“We’re seeing a concerning lack of progress in stopping the spread of sexually transmitted infections worldwide,” said Dr. Peter Salama, Executive Director for Universal Health Coverage and the Life-Course at WHO. “This is a wake-up call for a concerted effort to ensure everyone, everywhere can access the services they need to prevent and treat these debilitating diseases.”
Based on the WHO report, which relied on data from 2016, among men and women between the ages of 15 and 49, there were 127 million cases of chlamydia in 2016, 87 million cases of gonorrhea, 6.3 million of syphilis, as well as some 156 million cases of Trichomoniasis.
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), or sexually transmitted infections (STIs), are caused by unprotected sexual contact. Such diseases can be passed from one person to another through the exchange of infected blood, semen or vaginal or other bodily fluids.
Sometimes these same diseases or infections can be transferred via non-sexual contact, such as when an infection is passed from mother to infant during pregnancy or childbirth, or through blood transfusions or shared needles.
The WHO warned against the spread of such diseases around the world, saying that they could pose a serious threat to public health, especially among adults and children.
According to the WHO report, syphilis alone caused an estimated 200,000 stillbirths and newborn deaths in 2016, making it one of the leading causes of baby loss globally.