Secular trends of gonorrhea in young adults in Israel: Three decades of follow-up Academic Article uri icon


  • Recent reports of increased rates of gonorrhea initiated an analysis of secular trends of gonorrhea in a young adult population. Gonorrhea is a notifiable disease in the Israel Defense Forces. The diagnosis is based on the typical clinical presentation, relevant epidemiologic data, and positive bacteriological culture. For the present study, the archives of the Epidemiology Department were reviewed for all documented cases of gonorrhea from January 1, 1978 to December 31, 2008, and the annual and seasonal incidence rates were calculated. Annual gonorrhea rates decreased from 2.3 cases per 1,000 soldiers in 1978 to an all-time low of 0.07 cases per 1,000 soldiers in 2008, representing a 97% decline. Multi-year average monthly rates varied from a low of 5.83 cases per 100,000 population in February to a high of 8.97 cases per 100,000 in August. The difference in the person-time incidence (PTI) rates for winter (5.9 cases per 100,000 person-years) and summer (6.8 cases per 100,000 person-years) was statistically significant (p < 0.01). Analyzing the long-term epidemiology of gonorrhea has shown that the infection rate is continuously decreasing and that it appears to be more prevalent in the warmer months.

publication date

  • January 1, 2010