29 Jan 2016

Tahiti records spike in syphilis

5:06 pm on 29 January 2016

Known syphilis cases in French Polynesia almost doubled to 83 since the sexually transmitted disease resurfaced in the territory in 2014, health authorities say.

According to the public broadcaster, doctors said the disease is at times linked to abuse, citing the case of a 14-year-old boy who was infected.

Last year, almost 250 cases of sexual abuse of a minor were reported to the police.

The health authorities also said the incidence of other sexually transmitted diseases, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, doubled at the same time.

They say five of the people who contracted syphilis were HIV positive.

They also note that the figures may not be fully accurate because syphilis is not a notifiable disease.