STD rate among older Californians is skyrocketing


SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – According to a report by based on data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Gonorrhea infection rates increased by 465.6% between 2010 and 2019 among Californians age 55 and older, the report said. The chlamydia rate increased by 238.4% and the prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus infection increased by 84.3%.

Nationally, gonorrhea rates have increased by 383%, chlamydia rates have increased by 200%, and the prevalence of HIV infection has increased by 92% in the same age group during the same period.

The study looked at rates in all states and found that the 88% increase in gonorrhea cases in Arkansas was the lowest in the United States. The largest increase was recorded in South Dakota: an increase of 1,393.4%. In fact, Mount Rushmore State was the only state to rank in the top 10 for gonorrhea, chlamydia, and HIV.

But why is this happening? says that “possible reasons for the trend may vary”.

“Divorce rates among those 55 and older are on the rise, lending itself to a potentially higher diversity of sexual partners among the population,” is an explanation given by the website. Others include that “drugs have kept men and women sexually active later in life,” “menopause causes thinning of vaginal tissue, which can increase susceptibility to STDs,” and “many people older people may not have received the same safer sex. school education that the younger generations have.

Researchers believe that because people over 55 are less likely to get pregnant, condom use may decline after menopause.

The CDC urges people to get tested and also offers increased testing as a possible explanation for the increases.

“Because chlamydia and gonococcal infections can be asymptomatic, the number of identified and reported infections may increase as more people are screened – even when incidence is stable or falling,” the CDC says. “Therefore, increasing case rates over time may reflect more complete reporting, as well as increased incidence of infection, testing coverage, and use of more sensitive tests. Similarly, a decrease in case rates may suggest a decrease in the incidence of infection or in screening coverage.

The CDC provides a zip code based on look for STD screening centers.


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