- The World Health Organization (WHO) announced Tuesday new treatment guidelines for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis.
- Updated treatment guidelines were issued in response to the growing problem of antibiotic resistance.
- There are some strains of gonorrhea already detected that do not respond to any available antibiotics, WHO stated.
Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis have typically been curable with antibiotics, but traditional treatments are beginning to fail due to their misuse and overuse. WHO is now urging nations around the world to align their treatment guidelines with its own recent updates to combat the growing problem.
Around 131 million people are infected with chlamydia, 78 million with gonorrhea, and 5.6 million with syphilis each year, WHO said. Left untreated, these STDs can cause result in serious, long-term complications and sometimes even death. The new guidelines are intended to reduce the spread of these three STDs and slow the development of multidrug-resistant strains.
Of the three, gonorrhea has developed the strongest resistance to antibiotics. There are currently only two antibiotics that, when given in combination, can reliably cure gonorrhea and some experts believe it is only a matter of time before the STD develops resistance to these drugs, as well, STAT reported.