Sheffield men are being given a health warning after the city was named sexually transmitted infections capital of Yorkshire, and one of the worst places in the country for the problem.
According to an online study, Sheffield men sought the most advice for symptoms of STIs in the region this year - with 101 people seeking help.
The second highest number of enquiries, at 68, came from Leeds, while Doncaster was third with 46 enquiries.
Sheffield’s total was the ninth-highest in the UK, with Birmingham the highest, with 142 enquiries.
In all locations, chlamydia was the most common STI, with gonorrhoea and genital warts being the second and third.
Sheffield city councillor and GP Jillian Creasy said the figures meant ‘more people are coming forward seeking help’.
“The key challenge is to make people aware they may have an infection and seek treatment,” she said.
Sheffield health chiefs said the figures were based upon ‘too small a sample to be meaningful’ - but also urged people to seek help if necessary.
Dr Jeremy Wight, Sheffield’s Director of Public Health, said: “Because the numbers are so small, and because the vast majority of people with concerns about sexual health symptoms are seen and treated by GPs or by the Sheffield Teaching Hospital’s sexual health services, it is wrong to interpret this data as saying anything meaningful about sexual health in Sheffield as a whole.”
The study was conducted by online clinic HealthExpress, which offers confidential consultations and the dispatch of medication.
It is billed as ‘the perfect option for those who do not feel comfortable seeing their own GP about STIs’.”
But Dr Wight said: “I would strongly advise people in Sheffield not to use this kind of online clinic, and instead to use the established NHS services.”
Sheffield NHS bosses are urging people to use the Sexual Health clinic at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital.
Appointments can be booked by calling 0114 276 6928, or a walk-in-and-wait service runs 9am to 11am weekdays.
Dr Hilary Jones, medical adviser at HealthExpress, said: “For the last two decades, the number of reported STIs has continued to increase.”