Trichomoniasis: an overview and more

Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). It is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases and can be called "trichome." Symptoms include itching, irritation, and discharge in women and painful urination in men. It is caused by a parasite, can be diagnosed by physical examination and microscopic analysis, and is treated with the antimicrobial drug Flagil (metronidazole).

Trichomoniasis symptoms

Trichomoniasis symptoms can appear anywhere from a few days to a month after infection, and it may even take several months for symptoms to appear. In fact, many people have no symptoms, but they can spread the infection to other people .

Women are more likely to experience symptoms than men if they get trichomoniasis.

Symptoms in women.

Symptoms are usually more noticeable in women than in men. In women, symptoms of trichomoniasis usually appear 1 to 4 weeks after infection.

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Symptoms of trichomoniasis in women include :

  • Irritation and itching of the vagina and the surrounding area.
  • Foamy-colored vaginal discharge
  • Strong vaginal odor
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Pain when urinating

Complications in women

  • Trichomoniasis can negatively affect the outcome of pregnancy. Pregnant women infected with the parasite are more likely to give birth prematurely and are more likely to give birth to a low-birth-weight baby.

Symptoms in men.

Most men do not have symptoms of trichomoniasis. When they do, their symptoms are usually mild and include :

  • Pain when urinating
  • Pain with ejaculation.
  • To shoot
  • Penile discomfort
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Trichomoniasis and HIV

If you have trichomoniasis, you are more susceptible to getting HIV , the virus that causes AIDS. If you are HIV positive, trichomoniasis also increases the chances of transmitting HIV to your sexual partners. There is a stronger association between trichomoniasis and HIV between trichomoniasis and HIV than in men.

Causes

Trichomoniasis affects both men and women and is caused by a single-celled parasitic organism known as Trichomonas vaginalis . The infection is sexually transmitted and can be transmitted sexually, as well as through skin contact involving the vagina or penis. The parasite can live in and around the vagina or inside the penis and is generally not associated with exposure to other parts of the body. It does not apply to shaking hands, touching or kissing.

How it spreads

The CDC estimates that more than 2 million people in the United States are infected with trichomoniasis. The more widespread and widespread it is, the greater the probability of infection. If you have unprotected sex with someone who might be infected, you are more likely to get the infection.

Effects on the body

In women, trichomoniasis causes a vaginal infection called vaginitis . In men, it affects the urethra, the tube inside the penis that carries semen and urine. The parasite penetrates the layer under the skin and causes an inflammatory reaction. The presence of the parasite and the resulting inflammation causes the characteristic itching, pain, discharge, and odor associated with trichomoniasis.

Diagnostics

The symptoms of trichomoniasis are somewhat vague and similar to those of skin diseases or other STDs. For a definitive diagnosis , you should consult your doctor, especially since there is a prescription against parasitic treatments that can cure the infection.

How an organism is identified

For both men and women, samples can be tested for the presence of the parasite itself, which can be visualized under a microscope. A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, which can detect the genetic components of the parasite, can also be used to diagnose an infection.

Diagnosis in women

If you have trichomoniasis, a physical exam may reveal vaginal irritation, discharge, and a distinctive odor. Trichomoniasis can also irritate the cervix, which is inside the body and can only be visualized on a physical exam.

A swab from the vagina, urethra (urine tube), or cervix produces a small sample of vaginal discharge. Your healthcare provider can then look at this sample under a microscope. This diagnostic method is called wet mounting . It can be used to visualize the parasite itself.

However, the parasite that causes trichomoniasis is not always visible on wet surfaces. Your healthcare professional may also seed vaginal secretions in a special environment to allow the body to grow, increasing the chances of identification. Urinalysis can also be used for diagnosis.

Diagnosis in men

Men with trichomoniasis infection rarely have abnormalities on physical examination. If you have symptoms of an infection, your doctor may test for infection with a urine sample or a urethral swab.

Additionally, nasal swab PCR can be used for both men and women.

Watch out

Treatment for trichomoniasis is usually effective if you are otherwise in good health. For women, it is recommended to take 500 mg of Flagyl (metronidazole) twice a day for seven days, and for men, a single dose of metronidazole of two grams. An alternative regimen for both men and women is a single 2-gram dose of Tindamax (Tinidazole).

Men and women who have received treatment and who have recurrent infections receive additional doses. Repetition of the above regimen is recommended for those who have relapsed the infection as a result of repeated contact with an untreated sexual partner.

In the event of a recurrence of an infection that is not caused by a reinfection of an untreated sexual partner, women are advised to take metronidazole or tinidazole once a day for seven days. Men are advised to take 500 mg of metronidazole twice a day for seven days.

There are cream and gel forms of metronidazole, but they are generally not effective in treating trichomoniasis.

Guidelines for Discussion with a Trichomoniasis Physician

Get our printable guide to your next doctor's appointment to help you ask the right questions.

You should not consume alcohol for several days while using these medications, as the combination can cause a serious physical reaction characterized by high blood pressure, shortness of breath, nausea, and vomiting.

After taking the medication, it is recommended to abstain from unprotected sex for a week until the symptoms disappear. This is because it takes about a week for the medicine to clear the infection. It is also important that your sexual partners receive treatment for trichomoniasis at the same time as you to reduce the risk of reinfection.

Prophylaxis

While abstaining from vaginal, oral, and anal sex is the only sure way to prevent trichomoniasis, consistent and correct use of condoms has been shown to reduce the risk of infection.

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