Dermatologists warn about sexually transmitted infections

Dermatologists warn about sexually transmitted infections
Dermatologists warn about sexually transmitted infections

Madrid (EFE).- The Spanish Academy of Dermatology and Venereology (AEDV) has warned this Wednesday of the exponential increase in sexually transmitted infections (STIs), of up to more than 200% in some of them, because “the fear” of HIV: “We are facing a real alert,” they have warned.

This has been highlighted by the spokespersons of the AEDV in the presentation of its 51st National Congress, in which until Sunday they will address this and other issues such as the impact of climate change on the skin, the use of artificial intelligence, therapeutic developments in melanoma or new therapies against vitiligo or hidradenitis suppurativa.

In 2022, according to the report “Epidemiological surveillance of Sexually Transmitted Infections in Spain 2022” from the National Center for Epidemiology (CNE) and the Cyber ​​of Infectious Diseases of the Carlos III Health Institute, STIs have increased especially in adults youths; gonorrhea and syphilis have multiplied their incidence by 25 and 10, respectively, while chlamydia has skyrocketed by 245% since 2016.

“Fear has been lost”

Figures that “reflect the behavior of our society and the behavior related to other diseases. We are facing a real alert and we have to continue alerting society that we must continue protecting ourselves,” warned the vice president of the AEDV, Isabel Belinchón.

A couple walks hugging. EFE/Ana Escobar

“There is a mistaken tranquility” in the face of these infections, derived largely from HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (Prep), which has meant that the fear of AIDS from a few decades ago has been “lost”, to which are added some practices such as ‘chemsex’ – the use of drugs to have sexual relations -, which increases the risk of transmission.

The first thing that dermatologists and venereologists recommend is to avoid these types of activities because “they entail very unprotected sex,” without forgetting that the use of narcotics “is never advisable for health.”

The profile of cases that come to their consultations is very broad, but “they are appearing in young people”, which is why Gilaberte has called on them to influence the education of children and adolescents “so that they are clear that they have to use condoms.”

Because these STIs leave serious consequences, especially infertility and, in the more specific case of women, pelvic inflammatory disease or cervical cancer as a consequence of the human papillomavirus; In men, although less common, squamous cell carcinoma of the penis occurs.

Resurgence in scabies cases

Another issue that worries these specialists is the rebound in cases of scabies after the confinement due to covid-19, which are now “much more recalcitrant and are sometimes resistant to the first topical treatment that is given -permethrin-“.

Cases that are very difficult to eradicate because the mites that produce it “can stay on clothes, on sofas… and if the entire treatment is not done correctly, they become reinfected.”

Throughout these days, the more than 2,200 experts gathered in Madrid will also talk about the impact of climate change on the skin. “The population is going to be exposed to more hours of irradiation, which can lead to an increase in skin cancer,” explained the dermatologist.

Not to mention the probable synergy between infrared radiation, which is what gives heat with ultraviolet radiation, with the increase in cancer cases that, although “it has not yet been studied, is something that will have to be seen.” or the impact of pollution on diseases such as atopic dermatitis.

Tomorrow marks World Melanoma Day, of which some 7,800 new cases will be diagnosed this year. “Being outdoors and enjoying the sun is super good, but you have to do it with recommended clothing, hats, and good sun protection of at least 30.

It is also advisable to provide topical antioxidation, especially for some professionals who work outdoors, and protect the eyes with good sunglasses to avoid complications such as retinal macular generation cataracts.

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