GONORRHOEA and syphilis cases are on the rise across Southampton, figures show.

Data from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has revealed that more people in Southampton contacted STIs in 2022.

It shows that 393 cases of gonorrhoea were recorded in Southampton in 2022, an increase of 198 on the year before, when there were 195.

In 2012, there were 91 cases.

It comes as gonorrhoea cases hit a record high in England, while the number of syphilis diagnoses has reached the highest level since just after the Second World War.

Last year, 32 syphilis cases were also recorded – down from 34 in 2021.

UKHSA has said that people aged between 15 to 24-year-old are most likely to be diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections.

It is urging people who are having sex with new or casual partners to wear a condom and get tested regularly.

“We saw more gonorrhoea diagnoses in 2022 than ever before, with large rises, particularly in young people,” said Dr Hamish Mohammed, consultant epidemiologist at UKHSA.

“STIs aren’t just an inconvenience – they can have a major impact on your health and that of any sexual partners.”

He said condoms were the best defence against STIs, and urged people to get tested if they didn’t use one the last time they had sex with a new or casual partner, as many STIs do not show symptoms.

STIs can be easily treated with antibiotics but could cause serious health issues if left untreated.

Chlamydia and gonorrhoea can cause infertility and pelvic inflammatory disease, while syphilis can cause potentially life-threatening problems with the brain, heart or nerves.

A Southampton sexual health clinic can be found at Royal South Hants Hospital or at Bitterne Sexual Health Clinic at Bitterne Health Centre.