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Understanding Trichomoniasis -- the Basics

Trichomoniasis -- an infection from a parasite spread primarily through sexual intercourse -- is contagious but curable. Currently, there are an estimated 3.7 million cases of this sexually transmitted disease in men and women in the United States. In the majority of men, it doesn't cause symptoms, which makes it notoriously difficult to diagnose. However, women usually have symptoms more frequently, which may include genital discomfort and vaginal discharge. A woman's symptoms may be more pronounced right after menstruation or during 

Left untreated, the parasite may infect tissues throughout the urinary tract and reproductive system. In women, vulnerable sites for infection include the vagina, urethra, cervix, and bladder. In men, the infection may spread to the urethra and the prostate gland, seminal vesicles, and epididymis.

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Understanding Chlamydia -- Symptoms

Often chlamydia will present no symptoms. When symptoms are present, common ones include: In men: A clear or whitish yellow discharge from the tip of the penis A frequent urge to urinate or a burning sensation while urinating Redness at the tip of the penis Painful or tender testicles In women: Mild discomfort that you may mistake for menstrual cramps Vaginal discharge that may have a bad smell Bleeding between periods Painful periods Pain when having sex...

Read the Understanding Chlamydia -- Symptoms article > >

Genital inflammation caused by trichomoniasis can increase a woman's risk of getting HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), which can lead to AIDS. If a woman is already infected with HIV, there may also be an increased risk of infecting her sex partner with HIV.

 

What Causes Trichomoniasis?

The culprit behind trichomoniasis is a protozoan parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis, which usually is transmitted sexually. Transmission is through penis to vagina, vagina to penis, or vulva to vulva (the genital area outside the vagina).

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Trina Pagano, MD on March 14, 2015

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