WHAT IS TRICHOMONIASIS?

Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by a tiny parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. It is a very common STD and very easy to treat when identified early.


HOW DO PEOPLE GET TRICHOMONIASIS? 

Sexual contact: The parasite is passed from an infected person to an uninfected person during sex. In women, the most commonly infected part of the body is the lower genital tract (vulva, vagina, or urethra), and in men, the most commonly infected body part is the inside of the penis (urethra).

During sex, the parasite is usually transmitted from a penis to a vagina, or from a vagina to a penis, but it can also be passed from a vagina to another vagina. 

Pregnancy and Childbirth: Negative effects in babies such as low weight and early delivery. 
Can relapse: People who have previously had trichomoniasis and received treatment may be infected again if they have sexual contact with a person infected with the disease,



WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF TRICHOMONIASIS? 


According to the CDC about 70% of infected people do not have any signs or symptoms. When trichomoniasis does cause symptoms, they can range from mild irritation to severe inflammation. Some people with symptoms get them within 5 to 28 days after being infected. Others do not develop symptoms until much later. Symptoms can come and go.

Men with trichomoniasis may notice:


  • Itching or irritation inside the penis
  • Burning after urination or ejaculation
  • Discharge from the penis



Women with trichomoniasis may notice:


  • Itching, burning, redness or soreness of the genitals
  • Discomfort with urination
  • A change in their vaginal discharge (i.e., thin discharge or increased volume) that can be clear, white, yellowish, or greenish with an unusual fishy smell


 

WHAT ARE THE COMPLICATIONS OF TRICHOMONIASIS? 

Trichomoniasis can increase the risk of getting or spreading other sexually transmitted infections. For example, trichomoniasis can cause genital inflammation that makes it easier to get infected with the HIV virus, or to pass the HIV virus on to a sex partner.
 

WHEN SHOULD I GET TESTED FOR TRICHOMONIASIS? 

As the incubation period changes from person to person, the safest choice is one month after a potential exposure. 


HOW IS TRICHOMONIASIS DIAGNOSED? 

 Trichomoniasis can sometimes be difficult to diagnose because symptoms are similar to those of other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

In women, trichomoniasis may cause abnormal vaginal discharge or red blotches on the walls of the vagina and on the cervix (the neck of the womb).

A man with suspected trichomoniasis will be examined for signs of inflammation or discharge from the penis. Laboratory examination includes taking a swab from either the vagina or penis. The swab will be analysed in a laboratory to check for signs of the trichomoniasis infection. It may take several days for the results to come back. Also, in men a urine sample can also be tested for trichomoniasis.

WHAT IS THE TREATMENT FOR TRICHOMONIASIS? 

Trichomoniasis can be cured with a single dose of prescription antibiotics, which can be taken by mouth. This antibiotic is also okay for pregnant women to take. Most people are prescribed an antibiotic called metronidazole which is very effective if taken correctly. You'll usually have to take metronidazole twice a day, for five to seven days.