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San Francisco health officials report sexually transmitted diseases (STD) have been increasing
steadily in San Francisco and across California since 2013.


Some of the rising numbers include syphilis in women. Between 2017 and 2018, the number of women with syphilis has increased 144 percent to 71. In related data, statewide, 283 infants were born with syphilis in 2017.

In addition, between 2013 and 2017, reported cases of chlamydia rose 79 percent from 5,085 to 9,094. Many of these cases are in young women.

On this year’s STD Awareness Month, Bay Area health officials are urging everyone who is sexually active, especially young people, women, transgender people and men who have sex with men to take charge of their sexual health.

“Quite often, someone can have an STD and not show any symptoms. An important way to stop the ongoing spread of STDs is for more people to get checked regularly and talk to their partners about getting checked as well,” said Dr. Susan Philip, STD Controller for San Francisco. ”Condom use is also effective and a good option for people. The power to prevent STDs is in your hands.”

The rising cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis are curable with antibiotics. Yet because they do not cause symptoms, these infections can go undiagnosed and untreated, which can lead to infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirth and increased HIV risk.