Morning-after Pill Recommended to Reduce Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Without U.S. FDA-approved vaccines, a common antibiotic may become a "morning-after" pill to reduce the spread of chlamydia, syphilis, and gonorrhea among populations at higher risk for contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
On October 11, 2023, Dr. Connie Celum, a professor of global health and medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, stated in a press release, "Every year for the last six or seven years, there's been an increase in bacterial STDs. So the current approach of testing and treating is just not enough."
"Preventive doxycycline is "the best new intervention identified for STD prevention for quite a long time."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued a preliminary recommendation for doxycycline to be prescribed to trans women and men who have sex with men, who also have experienced at least one sexually transmitted infection in the previous year, and who are at ongoing risk to acquire an STD.
Dr. Celum co-led one research study whose findings motivated the CDC's recommendation for "doxy-PEP."
In 2022, a study ended early because a single dose of 200 milligrams of doxycycline, taken within three days of unprotected sex, was highly effective at preventing the abovementioned STDs.
The most significant reduction was in chlamydia and early syphilis infections, added Celum.