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Do sexually transmitted infections (STIs) only affect the young?

A growing number of older people are contracting STIs, finds a report by England’s chief medical officer, Professor Dame Sally Davies

 

BABY BOOMER FOCUS

The report, which focused on the health of the ‘baby boomer’ generation, found that STI diagnoses in people aged between 50 and 70 have risen by more than a third over the last decade.

 

UP BY NEARLY 40%

In 2010, sexual health clinics recorded 11,366 new infections among this age group, which grew to 15,726 in 2014 – a rise of 38%.

 

FROM WARTS TO HIV

The most commonly diagnosed STIs in 2014 among those aged 50 to 70 were warts, chlamydia, genital herpes and gonorrhoea. HIV cases have also risen among this age group, accounting for 16% of all new STI cases.

 

CONTRIBUTORY FACTORS

The report argues that factors including rising divorce rates, meeting new partners later in life and foregoing condoms could be attributed to this rise in STIs, and calls for better communication between GPs, sexual health services and older patients.