A connection between drug use and high syphilis rates in the United States was established with a recent report released with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Sarah Kidd, lead author from the report, noticed that two major medical issues, namely addiction and syphilis, have also been colliding together.
The report displayed an association between drug use and installments of syphilis in heterosexual individuals. As per the report, using heroin, methamphetamine, along with injection drugs through the aforementioned group almost doubled from 2013 to 2017.
The report however, would not display an identical increase in substance abuse in gay men experiencing syphilis. According to the study, the results from the study indicated that risky sexual behaviors associated with substance abuse may be one from the key driving factors for this rise in syphilis on the list of heterosexual population.
People using drugs prone to engage in unsafe sexual activities
According to experts, people abusing drugs are very likely to engage in unsafe sexual activities, thereby driving them to more susceptible to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Syphilis significantly increased among heterosexuals especially through the ‘crack cocaine epidemic’ prevalent throughout the 1980s and 1990s. It was observed that in this particular interval, the application of drugs was linked to the higher transmission rates of syphilis.
According to Patricia Kissinger, professor epidemiology on the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, fairly tendency among people abusing drugs to enjoy unprotected sex, exchange sex in place of money or drugs, and also have multiple sex partners. All these are regarded as significant risk factors causing the spread in the disease.
Syphilis rates are setting new records
At the national level, the occurrences of syphilis jumped by around 73 percent in an overall level and 156 percent in case there is women patients between 2013 and 2017. While syphilis have been almost eradicated, lately, the biggest resurgence from the disease was reported in California, Louisiana, and Nevada. Syphilis is treatable with antibiotics, however, if left untreated, there may be organ damage and also death in some instances. In women, congenital syphilis typically is the place a mother transmits the sickness to her baby, ultimately causing cases of premature birth and newborn fatalities.
Analyzing the syphilis cases that occurred between 2013 and 2017, the study discovered that methamphetamine abuse was the greatest contributor. The report stated more than one-third of girls and a quarter of heterosexual men being affected by syphilis were considered to be abusing methamphetamine during the last year. The California Department of Public Health reported that methamphetamine use by people struggling with syphilis, doubled in the event of heterosexual people between 2013 and 2017.
Why will it be difficult to treat sexually transmitted infections?
Owing on the overlapping cases of substance abuse and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), it is challenging to identify and treat people affected by syphilis. That is because, typically, people using medicines are less likely to go to a doctor or report their sexual activities or partners.
Likewise, women that are pregnant may try to keep from seeking prenatal care and find themselves tested for syphilis on account of concerns for instance their gynecologists reporting their substance abuse. To combat this matter, the CDC urges to produce more collaboration between programs treating drug use and programs addressing STIs.
Fresno County reported highest rate of congenital syphilis
According to your report, the greatest rate of congenital syphilis was reported in Fresno County in California. The county’s community health division manager, Joe Prado, declared that the California Health Department analyzed around 25 congenital syphilis cases in 2017 and over two-thirds of those women were abusing drugs.
To address this challenge, america took proactive measures including offering STD testing for patients getting admitted into inpatient drug treatment centers. Patients wanting reports were provided incentives including gift cards. Apart from this, for patients undergoing drug treatment, the county offered a care package comprising of contraceptives and education materials about STIs.
While it’s significant to have increased collaboration between STD clinics and drug treatment providers, it really is not always that straightforward, website traffic two entities have never worked together previously. Usually both these units often focus only on the relevant specialties and infrequently fail to screen people for associated ailments like syphilis or some other forms of STIs or for drug use.
According to Jeffrey Kalusner, professor of drugs and public health for the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), to be able to fight the increasing rates of syphilis more resources are important. He added that though policies could be implemented towards syphilis testing, these policies have to be accompanied with appropriate resources.
Seeking treatment for abusing drugs
Drug abuse is often connected with the growth of physical ailments like hepatitis C, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), syphilis along with other STDs. These infections may be severe and bring about rapid deterioration of all-around health. The best way to steer clear of the contraction of the diseases is always to avoid taking drugs or if addicted, to look for addiction treatment help on the earliest.
The alcohol and drugs detox centers of Hillside Mission offer comprehensive evidence-based treatment plans for alcohol abuse. Whether selecting an inpatient, outpatient, or maybe a residential plan, the detox process at Hillside Mission was created to minimize the patient’s discomfort and cause a shorter treatment cycle.