CDC Encourages Yearly STD Testing More Than Ever

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is encouraging people to have yearly STD testing now more than ever. With record-setting rates of chlamydia infections in 2007 (over 1 million), the CDC supplied this simple statement: “get tested”. Following this statement they offered recommendations for individual STDs.

According to the CDC, everyone ages 13 to 64 should do an HIV test at least once. People who have had more than one partner since their last STD test, and people who’s partner has had more than one partner should get tested regularly. Also at higher risk are men who have sex with men (MSM) and people who already have an STD. These people should also get tested at least once a year.

Women should get an annual Pap test beginning when they are 21-years of age, or earlier if they are sexually active. The Pap test is a screening tool used by doctors to detect cancerous changes of the cervix, which is a common result of the common human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV usually does not show any symptoms; however, it can lead to genital warts in both men and women. Unfortunately there is no screening test for HPV in men. Men who think they have symptoms of HPV should see someone about a physical exam.

In addition to HPV, the CDC suggests that sexually active women under 25 should get tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea at least once a year. Regular screening is also recommended for men who have sex with men, older women who have had multiple partners, and pregnant women.

Syphilis rates reached a record low in year 2000; however, they have been increasing since causing the CDC to suggest syphilis screening for individuals who feel they are at risk.

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