6.01.2005

Another STD ~ LGV makes news

CBC was reporting today that 22 cases of lymphogranuloma venereum have been reported to the country's public health agency, according to an analysis in the May 31 online edition of the Canadian Medical Association Journal(CMAJ).
"Currently in Canada, LGV appears to be primarily occurring among men having sex with men, a high proportion of whom have concurrent HIV infection, other [sexually transmitted infections] or hepatitis C," the analysis says.
Lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV) is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by Chlamydia trachomatis serotypes L1, L2 and L3. Unlike other serotypes (A to K), those that cause LGV are invasive and preferentially target lymph tissue. LGV can be transmitted through vaginal, anal or oral sexual contact and can be prevented through the use of condoms or other barrier methods. - From report in CMAJ May 31, authors Rhonda Y. Kropp Senior Public Health Analyst,and Thomas Wong, Director Community Acquired Infections, Public Health Agency of Canada

The announcement today in the CMAJ is not something new. Gay community health workers have been aware of this STI for at least the last 18 months. The presence of STI is not any worse than other STI's. Currently HIV and Syphillis are much more worrisome than LGV.

Today's headline news is good in that it may help or alert health officials with identifying this STI of the possibility of being present and prescribe treatment. That is all there is. This will make no difference in the lives of gay men or men that have sex with men.

As a gay man, my advice is not to get bent out of shape on today's news of a old STI now appearing here. You know how to prevent it, and if you get it, like any STI, see you healthcare provider.

8 comments:

HDcanuck said...

And to this day, I have never seen a free-condom dispenser or organized HIV/STD information and health alerts in a gay bar in Vancouver. AIDS Vancouver and BCPWA need to account for why not.

Anonymous said...

Why must there always be someone held to account for something that is so obvious. If I were the owner of a gay bar I would think the free condom machines would be a cost of doing business. More to the point, if you are going into a Gay bar one would think you would have the dam condom before you even went in. Simple responsibility.

HDcanuck said...

Yes, the ultimate responsibility is with the individual who chooses to have safe or unsafe sex. But the fact is, people are people -- it is easy to forget to take condoms with you and it is easy to get into a sexual situation in a bar when you add alcohol, even though your intent may not have been to do so. What do we have AIDS groups for then, if not to provide education and primary prevention materials where they are most needed and best targetted (clearly a gay bar)? I have heard that bar owners are even resistant to condoms being in their establishment; if true, then the AIDS groups should be exposing them and holding the bar owners to account. My point is that even the basics of primary prevention are lacking. To ask why is legitimate question.

Re-awakened Shaman said...

the operative word is "safer" sex. There isn't any such thing as safe sex. All sex is risky from high to low and until everyone understands that there will be excuses why there are not any free condoms in every bar both gay and straight and in-between!

A bigger issue than "unsafe" sex is crystal meth. When many men are using this poisonous mix of chemicals it doesn't matter if there are free condoms or not!

At least without the use of crystal meth, there is a possibilty of two people negotiating the risk involved in their encounter.

Rick Barnes said...

If I were the owner of a gay bar I would think the free condom machines would be a cost of doing business
Good point, AIDS Vancouver and BCPWA could help out too. Where is the BCCDC on this?

HDcanuck said...

Yes, "safer" sex. Crystal is a serious issue, no doubt, but why there is so much hand wringing over things we can do little about (drug abuse) when primary prevention is lacking, is absurd. It's a bit like saying don't bother putting seat belts in cars because a lot of people are driving recklessly anyway. Where are the reminders that HIV and other STDs are still an issue? Not at the bars I go to. Party on!

HDcanuck said...

On that thought, Shaman, where is the information and awareness building on the health consequences of crystal use? Again, absent from the gay bars. A friend of mine works at a popular gay bar downtown and every night after closing they are cleaning up the crystal and other drug paraphernalia. Not a good scene, but more alarming to me is the absence of education in the bars (like safer sex info and tools).

Re-awakened Shaman said...

H.D.

Points well taken!