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Congenital Syphilis Rates Are the Highest They've Been in More Than 20 Years
After years of decline, rates of congenital syphilis are once again on the rise in the US. According to an analysis published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on June 5, cases of congenital syphilis—or a syphilis infection passed from mother to baby during pregnancy—rose 261% from 2013-2018, from 362 cases to 1,306 cases. Of those 1,306 cases in 2018, the CDC reported 94 resulted in stillbirths or early infant deaths.
“This is the highest number of congenital syphilis cases reported in the US since 1995,” Anne Kimball, MD, MPH, who works in the CDC's Division of Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention, tells Health. “The rise in congenital syphilis parallels an increase in syphilis among women overall, so the increase is largely because more women of reproductive age (15-44) are getting syphilis. In fact, the US rate of primary and secondary syphilis has increased almost every year for nearly 20 years.”
Congenital Syphilis Rates Are the Highest...
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