Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis are on the rise in Illinois.

Cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis are on the rise in Illinois.  The news comes from the Illinois Department of Public Health.  Between 2008 and 2012, reported cases of chlamydia in Illinois increased by 14% and syphilis increased by 82%.

Dr. Vidya Sundareshan has been studying infectious diseases at the SIU School of Medicine for quite some time.

"We almost thought that we had overcome syphilis," said Sundareshan.  "But then, there has been increased screening and diagnosis."

Increased screening, one of the major causes for these shocking new statistics.

"People are looking are for it more often," said Sundareshan.  "There are more people coming in for testing."

On top of that, Sundareshan says, "There was has been increased reporting."

Since 2011, the Illinois Department of Public Health has required all health care facilities to report any confirmed cases of STDs.  This mandate helps reveal the true magnitude of the situation.  Now, health professionals are urging all sexually active people to get tested even if they don't have symptoms.

"What happens with chlamydia and some of these sexually transmitted diseases is that people can be asymptomatic," said Sundareshan.

Women need to be especially vigilant.

"Women have a slightly higher rate of chlamydia.  The recommendation really is 25 years or younger sexually active females need annual testings."

The same recommendation for men, 19 through 24.  Doctors also stress lowering the number of sex partners.
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