The Latest

New bacteria infecting gay men in San Francisco and Boston

Updated (by Mark): Don't panic. Fenway Community Health has an informative web site about this alert and how to reduce your risk here.

This is frightening.

The New York Times is reporting that a new, highly drug-resistant strain of bacteria is spreading rapidly among gay communities in San Francisco and Boston.

According to researchers, this new strain of the "flesh-eating" MRSA bacteria "seemed to be spread most easily through anal intercourse but also through casual skin-to-skin contact and touching contaminated surfaces."

Read more.

8 comments:

the zak said...

A thought experiment http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thought_experiment
the strategy of let's get tested TOGETHER BEFORE we have sex for A VARIETY of STDs. A sexual health checkup reduces the ambiguity and can be like anything else
that's interesting that people do together http://notb4weknow.blogspot.com

Mark D. Snyder said...

Do you expect gay guys to get tested with their next manhunt hookup before they do it? Give me a break.

Get tested on your own, and always assume your risks when you are with any partner. That means be informed about the risks, and when having sex use a condom/protection every time. There are also other ways to minimize your risk of injury/stds such as using plenty of lube, jerking off instead if you don't have condoms, etc.

the zak said...

> Do you expect gay guys to get
> tested with their next manhunt
> hookup before they do it? Give me
> a break.

no. and the epidemic marches on along with the death toll and the medical costs.


> Get tested on your own, and always
> assume your risks when you are with
> any partner.

i could respond to this statement with the same kind of incredulity that you responded to my proposal with. obviously it's not happening. the epidemic marches on along with the death toll and expenses.


> That means be informed about the
> risks, and when having sex use a
> condom/protection every
> time. There are also other ways
> to minimize your risk of
> injury/stds such as using plenty
> of lube, jerking off instead if
> you don't have condoms, etc.

yet another incredulous statement. obviously it's not happening. the epidemic marches on along with the death toll and medical costs.

Mark D. Snyder said...

Zac,

Perhaps I'm a bit confused about your "thought experiment."

There are many reasons why people who work in risk reduction do not recommend getting tested with every partner before they have sex, but rather meet people where they are at and then discuss the many ways to reduce their risks of contracting stds/HIV.

I think the "thought experiment" is really suggesting that gay men be monogamous because as you know in order to be sure you are HIV free you should be tested twice - the whole process can take over 6 weeks. Many high risk men who have sex with men have multiple partners per week or day, so it is compeltely unrealistic and not helpful to them to simply suggest that they get tested with their partners.

If i'm totally confused about something or off-base, let me know...

the zak said...

> Perhaps I'm a bit confused about your "thought experiment."

We're designed that way by nature so that we go ahead and take sexual opportunities.


> There are many reasons why people who
> work in risk reduction do not recommend
> getting tested with every partner
> before they have sex, but rather meet
> people where they are at and then
> discuss the many ways to reduce their
> risks of contracting stds/HIV.

The strategy is going on now unobserved by advocates in public health. Recommending it won't work for the strategy of get tested TOGETHER BEFORE you have sex... for A VARIETY of STDs. A few will do the strategy. It could be some genetic combination in a few people for behav\
ior change or paranoia that the few defer or evade the powerful force of the biological imperative to go ahead when sexual opportunity pops up.


> I think the "thought experiment" is
> really suggesting that gay men be
> monogamous because as you know in order
> to be sure you are HIV free you should
> be tested twice - the whole process can
> take over 6 weeks.

It acknowledges that people have multiple sex partners. And it raises the uncomfortable matter for people who want to believe they have a mutually faithful relationship.


> Many high risk men who have sex with
> men have multiple partners per week or
> day, so it is compeltely unrealistic
> and not helpful to them to simply
> suggest that they get tested with their
> partners.

It could be their genetic combination gives priority to go ahead and take the sexual opportunities before the opportunities could go away. For people who get infected it could be the weeding out of the gene pool.


> If i'm totally confused about something
> or off-base, let me know...

I'm working on mine. If it changes for you, let me know what happened that you got unconfused.

Mark D. Snyder said...

I can't say your response makes any sense to me at all.

I encourage all of our readers to use scientifically backed risk reduction methods when talking about safer sex, stds, and the likes.

Get tested regularly. Use protection (condams, dental dams, latex or poly). Use plenty of lube. Wash thoroughly with soap and water after sexual activity, and going to the gym.

the zak said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the zak said...

> I encourage all of our readers to use scientifically backed
> risk reduction methods when talking about safer sex,
> stds, and the likes.

Preventive medical testing is a well recognized and scientific method. That's why children get tested for tuberculosis BEFORE they go to school.