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These programs will address the unsafe sexual practices and complacency that have resulted, in part, from advances in treatment, and help men to establish and maintain safer behaviors over a lifetime. The study found that many MSM in the county reported having unprotected sexual intercourse, and that many were infected with an STD.
To accomplish this goal, CDC provides funding and guidance to state and local public health departments and community based organizations to track the course of STD epidemics, raise awareness of STDs, and to design, implement, and evaluate prevention and treatment programs.The majority of those surveyed knew that penile, oral and anal ulcers are signs of the disease. Following are summaries of key studies presented at the conference: Increasing Gonorrhea Rates in Denver: Another new study found that, following five years of declining gonorrhea rates among MSM in Denver, there was a sharp resurgence in infection rates from 1995 to 1999. D., Director for AIDS at the Denver Department of Public Health, and his colleagues analyzed patient records at the Denver Metro Health Clinic, and found that gonorrhea rates among MSM visiting the clinic dropped from 6.4 percent in 1990 to 5.4 percent in 1995, before they began to increase significantly, to 7.9 percent in 1996 and 12.8 percent in 1999.Gonorrhea rates among HIV-positive MSM also increased during this period, from 9.3 percent in 1995 to 19.7 percent in 1999.In the summer of 1999, for example, health officials in San Francisco identified an outbreak of syphilis among gay men who had met their sexual partners in an Internet chat room. D., of the San Francisco Department of Health reported on successful efforts to provide STD prevention information through the Internet following this syphilis outbreak.Website staff worked with health workers to post information about syphilis on a popular gay Internet home page, which was linked to the Department of Health STD clinic website, and also visited chat rooms to educate participants about syphilis and to encourage people who had met partners in the chat room to seek medical evaluation.Rietmeijer noted that these trends coincided with the availability of effective new HIV/AIDS treatments, which may be causing some MSM to become complacent about safe sex practices. Handsfield's analysis shows that 68 MSM in King County were reported with infectious syphilis in 1999, compared to only five MSM in 1997.
MSM also represented a growing share of all syphilis cases in the county, increasing from 28 percent (five out of 18 cases) in 1997 to 84 percent (32 out of 38 cases) by the first half of 2000.
The study also found that gonorrhea and chlamydia rates among MSM in the county have increased significantly in recent years.
By the middle of the 1990s, gonorrhea rates among MSM had been reduced tenfold below the rates of the early 1980s.
This upward trend contrasts with gonorrhea rates seen in heterosexual men visiting the clinic, which fell from 8.2 percent in 1995 to 5.7 percent in 1999.
The increase in gonorrhea among MSM was accompanied by an increase in the reported rate of anal intercourse, which increased from a stable level of 55 percent through the end of 1996 to 79.1 percent in 1999. D., of the University of Washington and his colleagues reported that the epidemic of bacterial STDs, including syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia, continued to grow among MSM in King County, Wash., during the first 10 months of this year.
The researchers identified a similar trend for cases of chlamydia among MSM in the county.