Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Syphilis, Sex, Drugs and the Internet

The incidence of syphilis is on the rise, particularly in men who have sex with men (MSM).  I am seeing this far too frequently in the HIV clinic.

Here is an article published in the American Journal of Public Health on the dangerous mix of drugs, in particular methamphetamies, and the use of the internet to meet sexual partners in a cohort of MSM with syphilis.

Using multivariable analysis, methamphetamine use and searching for sexual partners on the internet was significantly associated with an increased number of sexual encounters. Not unexpected.

This underscores the need for comprehensive sexual education, as reviewed here in Sexuality Research and Social PolicyCommon sense interventions such as sexual education and the promotion of condom use can have positive public health benefits.  

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