According to data published today by the World Health Organization (WHO), More than 1 million people between the ages of 15 and 49 are infected every day with a sexually transmitted infection (STI) that can be cured. In total, more than 376 million new cases of these four infections are reported annually: chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, and syphilis.
Dr. Peter Salama, Executive Director of Universal Health Coverage and Lifetime at WHO, said: "We are verifying a worrying lack of progress in the fight to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases in the world. It is a wake-up call so that we can wake up and work together so that everyone, everywhere, can access the services they need to prevent and treat these debilitating diseases ».
In this study, which was published online in the Bulletin of the World Health Organization, the numbers for new cases of these diseases are presented. between men and women aged 15-49 in 2016: chlamydiosis, 127 million; Gonorrhea, 87 million; syphilis, 6.3 million and trichomoniasis, 156 million.
These STDs have profound repercussions on the health of adults and children around the world. If left untreated, they can have serious and chronic effects and cause neurological and cardiovascular diseases, infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirths and increased risk of HIV infection. In addition, they were also associated with high levels of domestic violence and stigmatization.
According to estimates, syphilis caused 200,000 stillbirths and neonatal deaths by 2016, a number that makes the disease one of the leading causes of newborn deaths worldwide.
STDs continue to be a persistent and endemic threat worldwide
Since the publication of the latest available data in 2012, there have been no substantial reductions in rates of new infections or in the prevalence of these diseases. According to the most recent average data, about one in 25 people have at least one of these STIs and may be infected by several of them at the same time.
STIs are transmitted primarily through unprotected sex, whether vaginal, anal or oral. In addition, some of them – such as chlamydiosis, gonorrhea and syphilis – can also be transmitted during pregnancy and childbirth or, in the case of syphilis, by contact with blood or infected blood products or by injecting drugs.
STIs can be prevented by not taking risks during sex – for example, by using condoms correctly and regularly – and by sex education.
The timely and affordable availability of screening tests and treatments is essential to reduce the burden of STDs in the world, as well as efforts directed at people with active sex lives who do these tests. Besides that, WHO recommends systematic screening for syphilis and HIV infection in pregnant women.
All bacterial STIs can be treated and cured with widely available drugs. However, recent deficiencies in the global supply of benzylpenicillin have made syphilis treatment difficult. Bacterial resistance to gonorrhea treatments, which represent a growing threat to global health, is also increasing rapidly and may ultimately make treatment impossible.
There is a need to increase access to prevention, detection and
The WHO produces estimates to assess the global burden of STIs and helps countries and their health partners take action, such as conducting studies to strengthen prevention, improve quality of care, obtain new treatments and diagnostic tests. can use it in the spotlight and get investments to make vaccines.
In the elaboration of the global estimates, more information was obtained for women than for men, since data on the global prevalence of STDs in men are scarce. The WHO is trying to improve national and global surveillance so that there is reliable information on the extent of the burden of these diseases worldwide.
These data, which are included in the WHO Bulletin published online, will serve as a benchmark for progress made in implementing the World Health Sector Strategy on Sexually Transmitted Infections, 2016-2021. This strategy, which was endorsed by the World Health Organization in May 2016, proposed rapidly expanding science-based interventions and services to end STIs as a public health problem by 2030.
Notes to Editors
Global and Regional Estimates of Prevalence and Incidence of Four Sexually Transmissible Infections Cured in 2016 were included in the WHO Online Bulletin. These articles, which are submitted online before publishing them on paper, have not yet been formatted or reviewed by typographers, so the final text of the printed publication may vary.
Data on these four STIs
Trichomoniasis is the most common curable STI in the world. The pathogen that causes it is a parasite that spreads during intercourse. Chlamydiosis, gonorrhea and syphilis are bacterial infections.
STIs can cause symptoms such as genital lesions, vaginal or urethral discharge, painful urination and, in women, intermenstrual losses. However, most cases are asymptomatic and people may not be aware that they have contracted an infection before being tested.
Chlamydia and gonorrhea are some of the leading causes of pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility in women. In its more advanced stages, syphilis can cause serious cardiovascular and neurological disorders. In addition, these four diseases increase the risk of becoming infected with HIV and transmitting this virus.
Transmission of the pathogens that cause these diseases during pregnancy can cause serious consequences, such as fetal and neonatal deaths and low birth weight, prematurity, septicemia, blindness, pneumonia and congenital anomalies in the newborn.