Trichomoniasis: Fast Facts About STDs


Fast Facts About STDs: Trichomoniasis

Name of Disease or Infection
Trichomoniasis, also known as Trichomona, Vaginitis, Trich (pronounced "trick").

Type of Disease or Infection
Parasitic infection caused by Trichomonas vaginalis.

How Common Is It?
An estimated 7.4 million new cases occur each year in men and women.

How Do I Get It?
Trichomoniasis is transmitted through vaginal-penile intercourse or vulva to vulva contact with an infected partner. Women can be infected by women or men, while men are generally infected by female partners.

The majority of men with this condition do not have symptoms. Occasionally, some men experience a temporary irritation inside the penis and/or a mild discharge or slight burning after ejaculating or urinating. Some women develop symptoms including an unpleasant-smelling and frothy greenish, yellow or white discharge. Women may experience discomfort during intercourse or urination, and/or itching and irritation in the genital area. Symptoms usually appear in women 5 to 28 days after infection.

What Should I Do If I Think I Have It?
See your clinician or physician immediately for a microscopic examination of discharge. It is easier to find the infection in women than in men.

How Do I Get Rid of It?
Your physician will prescribe oral metronidazole, also called Flagyl. Both partners will need treatment, even if only one shows symptoms.

What Happens If I Don't Treat It?
Women who have been infected are more than twice as likely to develop tubal adhesions that may lead to infertility. Men may develop urethritis (inflammation of the urethra).

Who Should I Tell?
If you have trichomoniasis, you should tell any current or very recent partners (i.e., people you had contact with over the last month). Once the disease has been successfully treated, you do not need to tell future partners.