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Syphilis in Japan

08 Aug 2022

Media sources report record numbers of syphilis cases are being reported to Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases.   There has been a 64% increase in the number of cases reported up to June 2022 compared to June 2021 .  By 27 July 2022, 6385 cases had been reported. The Japanese districts reporting the most cases have been Tokyo and Osaka.

Syphilis is a bacterial sexually transmitted infection (STI). It is treatable with antibiotics, but if left untreated can cause serious health problems. It is becoming more common around the world, and from time to time there are outbreaks.

Advice to Travellers

The best way to prevent STIs is to have safer sex:

  • for detailed information, see The British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) Guide to Safer Sex

Take condoms with you when you travel, even if you aren’t planning to have sex, and always use them:

  • partaking of excess alcohol and recreational drugs can increase your likelihood of having unprotected sex

If you have had a new sexual partner whilst travelling, you should get a sexual health screen when you return home. Your local sexual health clinic can be located on the following websites:

See the fitfortravel Sexual Health Risks page for additional information.