Two cases of multi-drug resistant gonorrhoea recently detected in Australia: media release

Professor Brendan Murphy, Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer, Australian Government Department of Health 

17 April 2018

Two cases of multi-drug resistant gonorrhoea have been recently detected in Australia. One case was diagnosed in Western Australia and a second case diagnosed in Queensland. 

Multi-drug resistant strains can be difficult to treat and it is important to prevent further spread.

Evidence suggests that one of the Australian cases acquired their infection in Southeast Asia.

The situation is being closely monitored by public health authorities.

Can you get gonorrhoea from kissing?

ABC Radio (Hack), 8th November 2017

In a troubling development, Melbourne researchers suspect gonorrhoea is being spread by kissing, overturning years of conventional wisdom.

Although it’s early days and not cause for alarm, there is evidence to suggest ‘throat-to-throat transmission’ may be driving the spread of gonorrhea in inner-city Australia.

It’s been generally understood you could only get gonorrhea by having vaginal, anal or oral sex with someone who has gonorrhea. Dr Vincent J Cornelisse, a sexual health physician and PhD candidate at Monash University, has been conducting research that challenges this idea.

Professor Basil Donovan, head of the Sexual Health Program at the Kirby Institute, told Hack the finding was “highly tenuous”. “You’ll need a lot more science before you put out a warning,” he said.

 

In[ter]view: SHINE SA’s Dr Amy Moten

Verse magazine, Edition 18, September 2017

This edition we talked to Amy, SHINE SA’s Medical Educator, who is answering all your questions when it comes to the ‘what’s this’ and ‘how do I check that’ of sex.

  1. How often should people who are sexually active get tested?

You should have a test when symptoms of a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) are first noticed or if a sexual partner is diagnosed with an STI or has symptoms of an STI. Even if you have no symptoms STI screening is recommended for any new sexual contact. Annual screening for people under 30 is recommended, but you can have a test every 3 months if you think you may be at higher risk.

 

Sexually active older Australian’s knowledge of STIs & safer sexual practices

Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 2017  doi:10.1111/1753-6405.12655

Lyons, A., Heywood, W., Fileborn, B., Minichiello, V., Barrett, C., Brown, G., Hinchliff, S., Malta, S. and Crameri, P.

Abstract:

Objective: Rates of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are rising among older Australians. We conducted a large survey of older people’s knowledge of STIs and safer sexual practices.

Methods: A total of 2,137 Australians aged 60 years and older completed the survey, which included 15 questions assessing knowledge of STIs and safer sexual practices. We examined both levels of knowledge and factors associated with an overall knowledge score.

Results: In total, 1,652 respondents reported having sex in the past five years and answered all knowledge questions. This group had good general knowledge but poorer knowledge in areas such as the protection offered by condoms and potential transmission modes for specific STIs. Women had better knowledge than men. Men in their 60s, men with higher education levels, and men who thought they were at risk of STIs reported better knowledge than other men. Knowledge was also better among men and women who had been tested for STIs or reported ‘other’ sources of knowledge on STIs.

Conclusions: Many older Australians lack knowledge of STIs and safer sexual practices.

Implications for public health: To reverse current trends toward increasing STI diagnoses in this population, policies and education campaigns aimed at improving knowledge levels may need to be considered.

  • Access full text (open access) here 

Survey of middle-aged Canadians finds more sex and pleasure, less condom use

SIECCAN, June 2016

New research by Trojan condoms with the Sex Information and Education Council of Canada (SIECCAN) surveyed 2,400 Canadians between the ages of 40 and 59 about their sex lives.

63 per cent said they’re more sexually adventurous than they were a decade ago. 65 percent reported their last sexual encounter as being “very pleasurable.”

Findings also showed that two-thirds of single men and almost three-quarters of single women in the survey said that they didn’t use a condom the last time they had sex. More than half of those men had more than two partners in the past year. Almost three-quarters of single women said they did not use a condom the last time they had sex, and a third of those had more than two partners in the past year.  

56 per cent of single men and 61 per cent of single women are “not very concerned” or “not at all concerned” about contracting an STI. Lack of concern seems to be translating into high risk behavior.

  • View the press release here
  • Download the research preliminary report (PDF) here

 

 

 

 

 

Know your chances of contracting an STI

British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, Canada

A common question people have is “What are my chances of getting an STI?”  While there is no simple answer, the charts below give an estimate of your chances, when your partner has that sexually transmitted infection (STI). These charts are based on research where possible, and have been reviewed by STI experts in British Columbia. 

These charts don’t cover every situation or every STI.

For example, for HIV the charts do not address the fact that risk of transmission is even lower if your partner is on treatment for HIV and has undetectable viral load.

Here’s what the different chances mean in the charts:

  • Not passed (or possible only in theory): There is no possibility for passing the infection or it is theoretically possible, but there is no evidence that this happens.
  • Not commonly passed: This is not a common way to pass the infection but it may be possible with the right conditions (e.g., if condom breaks).
  • Can be passed:  The infection can be passed this way with the right conditions (for example, from skin which is not covered by a condom or barrier).
  • Easily passed: The infection is easily passed this way.

Links to charts: