Sexual Health news - Sexual Health and Behavior

Webinar on STD treatment guidelines for MSM set for June 7


One demographic in the U.S. in particular has been experiencing disproportionate hikes in rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs): men who have sex with men (MSM).

These individuals don't necessarily identify as being gay, but do have homosexual encounters. This can make treatment and screening recommendations difficult for physicians, who may be well aware of relatively high STD rates among gay males, but unaware of their patient's status.

As such, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is holding a webinar on June 7 to provide updated guidelines to physicians for treating MSM.

The live online session will include information on critical diagnostic and disease management challenges for STDs, an overview of the epidemiology for this demographic and recommendations to help physicians give advice to MSM on maintaining sexual health.

Presenters include John Brooks, M.D., of the CDC's HIV Epidemiology Research Team, Joel Gallant, M.D., M.P.H., a professor at Johns Hopkins University and Jeanne Marrazzo, M.D., M.P.H., medical director of the Seattle STD/HIV Prevention Training Center.

Following the webinar, participants may be better prepared to talk about the clinical significance of the topics that were discussed, describe epidemiological trends, identify important screening and treatment recommendations and promote health improvement and prevention to at-risk populations.

In a commentary in the Journal of the American Medical Association titled Optimizing Primary Care for Men Who Have Sex With Men, the authors conclude that patient-doctor communication may be a key component in improving the sexual health of MSM.

"Despite the complexities involved and the need for further research, clinicians can listen to these patients openly and without judgment and become better educated about current recommendations for the care of gay men or other MSM," the authors wrote in their report.