The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) said Thursday that three sexually transmitted infections (STI), chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis, are all on the rise in the state and they encourage residents to get tested.


Health authorities report between 2008 and 2012, reported cases of chlamydia increased 14% while syphilis increased by 82% and gonorrhea by 15% (between 2010 and 2012). For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page.

“Getting tested for sexually transmitted diseases and seeking prompt medical treatment if you find that you are infected can reduce your risk for further complications and passing the infection on to others,” said IDPH Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck. “Knowing the status of both you and your partner is essential to protecting your health and stopping the spread of these and other preventable diseases.”

Chlamydia and gonorrhea are bacterial infections that can easily be cured with antibiotics; however, most people do not have any symptoms and infections are often undiagnosed and untreated, according to an IDPH press release. Syphilis can cause long-term complications and/or death if not treated correctly. Symptoms in adults are divided into stages: primary, secondary, latent and late syphilis. Without treatment, STDs can cause serious health complications, including infertility among women.

Nationally, 20 million new STIs, including 50,000 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections occur each year. Almost half of those cases are among young people age 15 to 24 years.