Untreatable STDs: Three Common STDs Becoming Increasingly Antibiotic Resistant As Infection Rates Climb [Video]

Here in the U.S., we’ve heard a lot about antibiotic resistant gonorrhea, but the reality is that three common STDs are becoming increasingly untreatable, and that could be a big problem for a lot of people. That’s because the increasingly untreatable STDs plaguing the United States are also three of the most common infections in young adults, and infection rates are rising.

The three increasingly untreatable STDs in question are chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis, and they are becoming a real problem, especially among young adults between the ages of 20 and 24. Rates of all three STDs have jumped drastically in the last few years, with chlamydia up 2.5 percent, gonorrhea up 5.1 percent, and syphilis up a terrifying 15.1 percent.

As NBC News reports, this is the first large-scale increase in infection rates among these STDs in the U.S. in a decade, and the fact that the trio of common STDs are becoming untreatable is so worrisome among the public healthcare community that the World Health Organization (WHO) has taken the bold step of changing their treatment guidelines for the increasingly untreatable and antibiotic resistant STDs.

The CDC has called the trio of increasingly untreatable STDs hidden epidemics and is urging people to practice safe sex, including the use of condoms, as well as to undergo regular screenings for STDs if they are sexually active. After all, no method of protection is 100 percent effective. The warning is intended to go out to everyone who engages in sexual activity, but particularly the group that most commonly suffers from STD infections.

“STDs are hidden epidemics of enormous health and economic consequence in the United States.”

When it comes to dealing with STD infections, women are infected at rates higher than men, and 20- to 24-year-old women (college rate) are struggling with STDs the most. When it comes to STDs, chlamydia is the most common infectious disease in the United States, with gonorrhea coming in second. In many cases, infected individuals don’t even know that they are suffering from an STD infection. Combined with the frequency of STD infections, the increasingly untreatable nature of common STDs is sending shockwaves through the medical and scientific communities and could have serious repercussions throughout American society.

Over 800,000 people develop new gonorrhea infections in the U.S. each year, and that number is getting higher. Since the advent of antibiotics, they have been a tried and true treatment method for gonorrhea and a variety of other STDs. However, over the decades, the STD has become increasingly untreatable. Now, common STDs have become so untreatable and antibiotic resistant that doctors can only rely on a single class of antibiotics (much stronger and harsher than penicillin) to treat it, and even that doesn’t always work.

In fact, gonorrhea is now unresponsive to the so-called last-line antibiotic and is often referred to as a superbug.

In addition to gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis are also becoming increasingly untreatable STDs around the world. Thankfully for the women (and everyone else) who lives in the U.S., the problem with those two STDs being untreatable hasn’t become widespread in North America.

Because gonorrhea and other STDs have become so untreatable with standard antibiotic methods and even last-line treatments, the WHO is now recommending a new treatment for the highly communicable STD. The new treatment involves the use of two different drugs at the same time, effectively a one-two punch for gonorrhea and other untreatable STDs. So far, medical professionals have had incredible success by using an injection of ceftriaxone and oral azithromycin, and the WHO hasn’t recorded any treatment failures.

However, the newly implemented treatment guideline is being closely watched by medical personnel, because at this point, there’s no backup plan if STDs start showing resistance and become untreatable with the current medication regimen.

Of course, like always in the drug and medical industries, new treatments for untreatable STDs and other superbugs are in development, but they could be years or even decades away.

Because of a situation that is becoming more and more dire with each infection and each new outbreak of untreatable STDs, health officials are urging people to protect themselves. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, after all. This means using condoms faithfully, being selective about sexual partners, and getting tested.

Ironically, the uptick in increasingly untreatable STDs is blowing up as lawmakers in many areas of the United States are working diligently to shut down Planned Parenthood centers, which are often the first and last line of defense for people seeking to treat and prevent STDs and be educated about STDs, untreatable or otherwise, reports Yahoo News.

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