Late last year the Center for Disease Control (CDC) released the national rankings for sexually transmitted diseases and we thought we would bring all of you up-to-date with were Maricopa County stands on the rankings. We have also provided you some statistics from Maricopa County Public Health which focus specifically on Maricopa County.
Maricopa County ranked 7th in the nation for primary and secondary cases of syphilis. There are four stages of syphilis. The primary (characterized by a painless sore at the site of transmission) and secondary (multiple symptoms; however, the most common is a rash on the palms of hands and soles of feet) are the most contaigous. Syphilis is passed through intimate skin to skin contact. Typically one person presents with a sore (painless and can be unseen – located in the anus or vagina) and the other person will unknowingly come into contact with the sore. The second person will then develop a sore in the location where the first person’s sore touched him/her. The sore can be present anywhere from 7days to 6 weeks. It is really important to see a doctor and request syphilis testing if you think that you may have a sore or if you think you came into contact with a sore on a partner.
Primary – Secondary Syphilis (2014) County Rankings by Cases
Arizona State ranked 10th in the nation for congenital syphilis cases in 2014. If a pregnant female comes into contact with syphilis her unborn child can be affected and could possible die due to the disease. Prenatal care is important as females are checked regularly throughout the pregnancy. Testing for syphilis can also be obtained through the Maricopa County Public Health Clinic located at 1645 E. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ 85006 if prenatal care is not an option. Infants born to mothers who are infected with syphilis will require a 10 day in hospital treatment and will not be able to be sent home with the mother. Syphilis can cause a lot of damage to unborn children. For more information on how syphilis and pregnancy you can click the link to be taken to the CDC page for syphilis and pregnancy.
Data Specific to Maricopa County
The graph below represents syphilis cases in Maricopa County for years 2005 – 2014. You can see the significant increase in cases between 2013 and 2014. That trend continued on into 2015.
The next graph represents the number of primary and secondary (the first two stages of syphilis) cases in Maricopa County for years 2005 – 2014 by gender. You can see that the number of cases among the male population has significantly increased.
The last graph shows the sexual preference of the cases found in Maricopa County for years 2005 – 2014. As stated we are seeing a significant increase in cases among the men who have sex with men (MSM) population. To try and combat this increase Maricopa County is offering free presumptive treatment for syphilis to members of the MSM population. The presumptive treatment is offered in their clinic Monday – Friday from 8am – 4pm. When arriving at the clinic you should notify the receptionist that you are there for Clinic 6 services. Once registered you will be seen by an intake coordinator who will route you through the clinic process. If you are interested in receiving presumptive treatment be sure to inform the intake coordinator.