Teen Girls’ Chlamydia Drives STD Rate Up

Nov. 16, 2009 – Teen girls and young women have the highest rates of chlamydia, the sexually transmitted disease that’s exploding across the U.S.

More than 1.2 million cases have been officially reported, the largest number of cases for any of the diseases that must be reported to the CDC.

Because chlamydia infections usually don’t cause symptoms until they result in pelvic inflammatory disease, many cases remain undetected and hence unreported. Sexually active girls and women under age 26 should be screened for chlamydia every year, but only 41.6% of eligible women enrolled in Medicaid or private health plans do so.

Chlamydia rates are three times higher in women than in men and eight times higher in African-Americans than in whites.

Left untreated, some 10% to 20% of chlamydia infections cause pelvic inflammatory disease. That can lead to long-lasting pelvic painectopic pregnancy, and infertility. Every year, the CDC estimates, chlamydia and other STDs leave at least 24,000 U.S. women unable to bear children.

Girls ages 15 to 19 have the highest chlamydia rate: 3,276 cases per 100,000 females. The rate is only a little lower in women ages 20 to 24: 3,180 cases per 100,000 females.

Overall, chlamydia rates went up 9.2% from 2007 to 2008, the most recent year for which there is data. Some of the increase is due to increased screening, but the CDC suspects that much of the increase reflects a rising number of new infections.

Chlamydia rates ranged from state to state, with rates highest in Mississippi and Alaska (each with more than 700 cases per 100,000 population) and lowest in New Hampshire, West Virginia, Vermont, and Maine (each with under 200 cases per 100,000 population.

However, 57% of chlamydia cases are in cities. Here’s the ranking, by chlamydia rate, of the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S.:

Metropolitan Statistical Area 2008 Cases 2008 Rate
per 100,000
Memphis, Tenn.-Miss.-Ark. 9,199 1,385.9
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.-N.C. 8,789 1,036.3
Birmingham-Hoover, Ala. 4,948 862.6
Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Mich. 18,826 824.1
Jacksonville, Fla. 5,392 810.8
Richmond, Va. 4,981 797.8
Baltimore-Towson, Md. 10,774 779.4
Austin-Round Rock, TX 5,933 760.4
Indianapolis, IN 6,352 736.9
Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN 8,031 735.7
San Antonio, TX 7,206 709.7
Kansas City, MO-KS 7,115 703.7
St. Louis, MO-IL 10,166 702.3
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Tonawanda, NY 4,076 697.6
New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner, LA 3,722 694.3
San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, Calif. 10,257 692.7
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-NJ-DE-MD 20,708 687.8
Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, Ill.-Ind-Wis. 33,220 687.3
Oklahoma City, Okl. 4,119 681.3
Rochester, N..Y 3,594 680.9
Columbus, Ohio 6,027 678.5
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 20,125 658.5
Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, NC-SC 5,469 649.6
Las Vegas-Paradise, NV 5,842 647.7
Denver-Aurora, CO 7,824 637.6
Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land, TX 17,287 615.4
U.S. MSA TOTAL 501,750 607.0
Orlando, FL 6,160 600.9
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, OH 6,487 595.9
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA 38,100 587.7
New York-Newark-Edison, NY-NJ-PA 56,829 584.9
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL 8,099 579.4
Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT 3,474 569.4
Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, CA 5,997 564.5
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA 14,898 557.9
Louisville, Ky.-Ind. 3,504 554.3
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 14,967 550.7
San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, Calif. 11,514 544.5
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz. 10,725 518.3
Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro, Tenn. 3,916 507.5
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif. 10,009 490.9
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash. 7,975 481.2
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif. 4,218 478.8
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach, Fla. 13,144 472.6
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minn.-Wis. 7,037 436.5
Salt Lake City, Utah 2,254 417.0
Pittsburgh, Pa. 5,092 416.6
Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton, Ore.-Wash. 4,468 409.6
Providence-New Bedford-Fall River, R.I-.Mass. 3,327 402.3
Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, Mass.-N.H. 8,458 367.2
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, Wis. 1,116 141.3

Chlamydia isn’t the only STD on the rise. Once on the verge of being eliminated from the U.S., syphilis is making a comeback. Syphilis rates are up 67% since 2004,and jumped 18% from 2007 to 2008. Driving the syphilis comeback are infections among men who have sex with other men, who make up 63% of cases, but heterosexual syphilis is on the rise, too. The CDC reports the data in its “National Overview of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), 2008,” released Nov. 16, 2009.

https://www.webmd.com/sex/news/20091116/teen-girls-chlamydia-drives-std-rate-up#2

 

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