Type of Infection: Bacterial Trichomonas vaginalis
Prevalence: Trichomoniasis is the most common curable STD in young, sexually active women. An estimated 5 million new cases occur each year in women and men.
Transmission: Trichomoniasis is spread through sexual contact. Trichomania can also survive on infected objects such as washcloths, and could possibly be transmitted by sharing those objects.
Symptoms: Excessive, foamy diffuse, yellow-green vaginal discharge is common in women. Difficultly or pain on urination and/or intercourse is common. There may be vaginal pain and itching or there may be no symptoms at all. Men may experience inflammation of the urethra, glans, or foreskin, and/or lesions on the penis, but most infected men have no symptoms.
Treatment: The disease can be cured with antibacterial medication. Sex partners should also be treated.
Impact on Infected Person: The genital inflammation caused by trichomoniasis might also increase a woman's risk of acquiring HIV infection if she is exposed to HIV. Trichomoniasis in a woman who is also infected with HIV can increase the chances of transmitting HIV infection to a sex partner.
Impact on Fetus or Newborn: Trichomoniasis in pregnant women may cause premature rupture of the membranes and preterm delivery.
Preventive Measures: Abstaining from vaginal sex with an infected person is the only 100% effective means of preventing the sexual transmission of trichomoniasis. Latex condoms and other similar barrier devices can reduce but not eliminate the risk of contracting the disease during sex. Avoid sharing towels and washcloths with others to prevent non-sexual transmission of the disease.
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