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It may be 2017, but syphilis is making a comeback in Maine

Of all the sexually transmitted infections, syphilis typically falls pretty low on the list of concern. HIV/AIDS, HPV, and drug-resistant gonorrhea grab more headlines than an infection most of us consider a relic of history. You don’t often hear sex ed teachers warning students about a disease believed to have stricken the likes of Vincent Van Gogh and Al Capone.

Maine recorded 48 cases of the disease in 2016, according to the Maine CDC. That’s a 200 percent jump from 16 cases a decade prior.

While the overall number of cases is relatively small, syphilis was almost unheard of in the United States at the turn of the millennium. Following an outbreak in the early 1990s, the rate again fell to the lowest level since the U.S. began recording it in 1941.

The Fiddlehead Focus / St. John Valley Times is pleased to feature content from our sister company, Bangor Daily News. To read the rest of “It may be 2017, but syphilis is making a comeback in Maine,” an article by contributing Bangor Daily News staff writer Jackie Farwell, please follow this link to the BDN online.

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