BV is an overgrowth of bacteria that are normally in the vagina.
Bacterial vaginosis is the most common vaginal infection.
|Many women do not
have any symptoms.
When there are symptoms, they often appear as a form of vaginitis - an irritation of the vagina often associated with a vaginal discharge.
orally or intravaginally.
Products like douches or deodorant sprays that mask vaginal odor should not be used to treat BV.
Non-prescription medications should not be used to treat BV; this can interfere with proper diagnosis.
|Male condoms offer good protection against BV.||BV is not always
"caught" from another person. You can develop BV if you are not
sexually active, although it is more common in women who are sexually
BV is associated with premature delivery, low birth weight, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
About 3.5 million Americans are infected each year.
It is estimated that 20 - 40% of all sexually active women have probably been exposed to chlamydia at some time.
|Almost 70% of infected
women have no symptoms.
In most cases these drugs can wipe out the disease in less than 1 week.
Because risk for gonorrhea is high if you have chlamydia, you may be treated for this infection as well.
If left untreated, chlamydia can cause sterility in both men and women. Chlamydia is the major cause of PID. (Pelvic Inflammatory Disease).
In women, the infection can spread to the uterus and Fallopian tubes causing scarring and a blocked passage for the ova to leave the tubes, resulting in infertility and risk for ectopic pregnancy.
In men, the infection
can lead to epididymitis; a testicular inflammation which can result
|If used correctly and consistently, male latex condoms will partially protect against chlamydial infection.||The infection may
be passed through sexual activity, including oral sex.
|Cytomegalovirus (CMV)||There are usually
no symptoms with the first infection.
Reinfection with CMV, or infection with other sexually transmitted organisms such as HIV and hepatitis B, may reactivate the virus and cause illness.
CMV causes 8% of the cases of mononucleosis
|There is no cure.
Symptoms may be managed with a variety of intravenous drugs.
|Condoms can provide protection against CMV during vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse, but kissing and other intimate touching can spread the virus.||CMV is a virus
that is spread in saliva, semen, blood, cervical and vaginal secretions,
urine, and breast milk.
It also can be spread by:
(Human Papillomavirus, HPV)
HPV is the most common STI in the U.S.
Studies have shown that as many as 50 - 60% of college age women have been exposed to the virus, with most of them and their partners having no symptoms.
|HPV usually causes
a silent infection that does not have visible symptoms.
Approximately two-thirds of people who have had sexual contact with a partner with genital warts will develop warts, usually within 3 – 8 months of contact.
Genital warts often occur in clusters and can be very tiny or can spread into large masses on genital tissues.
genital warts often disappear over time. In other cases, they eventually
may develop a fleshy, small raised growth with a cauliflower-like
can eliminate the warts, none eradicate the virus and warts often reappear
Treatment varies depending on size and location of warts
It is particularly important for women who have cervical dysplasia (a premalignant or precancerous change to the cells of your cervix) to have regular Pap smears. This pre-cancerous cervical disease is readily treatable.
|The only way to
prevent HPV infection is to avoid sexual (direct skin-to-skin) contact
with an infected partner (these warts are very contagious).
If warts are visible in the genital area, sexual contact should be avoided until the warts are treated.
Using a latex condom during sexual intercourse may provide some protection (but warts can affect the area that the condom does not cover).
identified more than 100 types of HPV.
About one-third of the HPV types is spread through sexual contact and lives only in genital tissue.
Low-risk types of HPV (6,11 mainly) cause genital warts, the most recognizable sign of genital HPV infection.
Other high-risk types of HPV (16,18 mainly) cause dysplasia (precancerous changes) and cancer of the cervix, vagina, and vulva.
Women with HPV who smoke may be at greater risk for cervical dysplasia.
Having multiple sexual partners greatly increases the risk for acquiring HPV.
The Institute of Medicine estimates that 800,000 cases of gonorrhea occur annually in the United States.
often are mild. Up to 80% of people with gonorrhea have no symptoms
Symptoms usually appear within 2 – 10 days after sexual contact with an infected partner (although a small percentage of people may be infected for several months without showing symptoms).
cases of gonorrhea are common, other antibiotics are used to treat most
patients with gonococcal infections.
Gonorrhea can occur together with chlamydial infection, therefore, providers usually prescribe a combination of antibiotics.
|All sexual partners
of a person with gonorrhea should be tested and treated if infected
whether or not they have symptoms of infection.
Proper and consistent use of male condoms may prevent the spread of gonorrhea.
|Although in women
the cervix usually is the initial site of infection, the infection can
spread to and infect the uterus (womb) and fallopian tubes, resulting
in pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
Rarely it can spread throughout the body, affecting the joints, making the person very sick.
About 77,000 Americans get HBV every year because they have not been vaccinated.
There are now about 750,000 people with sexually acquired HBV in the U.S.
|HBV may show no
symptoms during its most contagious phases.
If symptoms appear, they appear within 4 weeks.
|None. In most cases the infection clears within 4 - 8 weeks. Some people, however, remain contagious for the rest of their lives.||Condoms offer some
protection against HBV during vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse, but
the virus can be passed through kissing and other intimate touching.
HBV is the only sexually transmitted infection that is preventable with vaccination.
|HBV is spread:
The virus affects anywhere between 5 and 20 million people, or up to 20% of all sexually active adults in the United States.
There are two types of HSV.
Most people contract Type 1 – which usually affects the lips, mouth, nose, chin or cheeks during infancy or childhood.
They usually acquire
it from close contact with family members or friends who carry the
virus and transmit it to them by touching, kissing, and by the use
of common eating utensils and towels.
|Some people infected
with HSV never experience any symptoms and others may have recurrent
episodes on average
4 - 5 times a year
Symptoms and consequences
are the same with either virus type in any location.
|There is no cure
for oral or genital herpes.
Medications can be taken to shorten the duration of the outbreak and decrease the pain.
Outbreaks tend to become less frequent and less severe over time.
|Two types –
both can cause genital herpes through direct skin-to-skin contact
To avoid spread of infection during active phase:
|As many as 80%
of people with genital herpes are not aware that they have the disease
because they do not develop or recognize the symptoms.
HSV is most dangerous when a woman is pregnant. Neonatal herpes infection can lead to severe illness and death in an infant.
HIV is the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome)
In 2000, 1,688
young people (ages 13 to 24) were reported with AIDS, bringing the
cumulative total to 31,293 cases of AIDS in this age group.
with HIV can look and feel healthy and may not even know that they are
infected. Even though they don't look or feel sick, they can infect
Symptoms vary from person to person. Only a blood test can tell if someone is infected with HIV. Only a provider can diagnose AIDS.
|At this time, HIV cannot be cured.||Condoms can provide protection against HIV during vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse.||Sharing "sex toys"
can be risky if their use involves contact with another person's blood,
semen, or vaginal fluid.
It is possible to become infected from just one sexual experience or one shared needle or syringe with an infected person. HIV is transmitted by:
hugging, touching, cuddling, kissing, and massage do not spread HIV,
as long as there is no contact with an infected person's blood, semen,
vaginal fluid, or breast milk.
Hundreds of thousands of cases of this virus are diagnosed every year.
appear between 2 - 12 weeks after infection — but it can
||Growths may be removed with chemicals, electrical current, or freezing with liquid nitrogen.||Condoms may offer some protection, but the virus may "shed" beyond the area protected by the condom (testicles, pubic area).||It is often transmitted
by nonsexual, intimate contact.
Molluscum Contagiosum is spread by vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse, as well as by other intimate contact.
Each year in the U.S. more than one million women experience an episode of acute PID, with the rate of infection highest among teenagers.
More than 100,000 women become infertile each year as a result of PID, and a large proportion of the 70,000 ectopic (tubal) pregnancies occurring every year are due to the consequences of PID.
when caused by chlamydial infection, may produce only minor symptoms
or no symptoms at all, even though it can seriously damage the reproductive
Many women with PID have sex partners who have no symptoms, although their sex partners may be infected with organisms that can cause PID.
|Due to the nature
of the infection, the provider will prescribe at least two antibiotics
that are effective against a wide range of infectious agents.
Patients should be re-evaluated by their provider 2 – 3 days after treatment is begun to be sure the antibiotics are working.
Because of the risk of reinfection, however, sexual partners should be treated even if they do not have symptoms.
of gonorrhea and/or chlamydial infections is very important for prevention
Use male latex condoms correctly and consistently.
|PID can affect
the uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, or other related structures.
Untreated, PID causes scarring and can lead to infertility, tubal pregnancy, chronic pelvic pain, and other serious consequences, including blindness in a baby born to a mother with chlamydia.
Risk Factors for PID:
Every year, millions of people treat themselves for pubic lice. These tiny insects are also called "crabs" or "cooties."
|Some people don't
itch and don't know they are infested.
Itching usually begins 5 days after infestation begins
|Follow the directions
on the package insert of an over-the-counter medication.
Everyone who may have been exposed to pubic lice should be treated at the same time.
All bedding, towels, and clothing that may have been exposed should be thoroughly washed in hot water or dry cleaned, and the home should be vacuumed.
Place items that
can not be washed in a plastic bag for two weeks to ensure decontamination.
|Limit the number of intimate and sexual contacts.||Pubic lice are
spread through contact with infected bedding, clothing, upholstered
furniture, toilet seats, and through intimate and sexual contact.
They attach themselves and their eggs to pubic hair, underarm hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows.
Their eggs are white and are deposited in small clumps near the hair roots.
are not visible. It may take several weeks for them to develop.
are available to treat scabies. Always follow the directions provided
by your provider or the directions on the package insert.
Everyone who may have been exposed to scabies should be treated at the same time.
All bedding, towels,
and clothing that may have been exposed should be thoroughly washed
in hot water or dry cleaned, and the home should be thoroughly vacuumed.
|Limit the number of intimate and sexual contacts.||The scabies mite
burrows under the skin. It can hardly be seen with the naked eye.
Scabies is spread through close personal contact, in bedding and clothing.
There are four stages
In 1999 over 35,600 cases of syphilis were reported in the U.S.
Syphilis occurred primarily in persons aged 20 to 39, and the reported rate for men was 1.5 times greater than the rate for women.
of syphilis was highest in women aged 20 to 29 years and in men 30
(appearance of an ulcer called a chancre ("shan-ker"):
with penicillin by injection.
A person usually can no longer transmit syphilis 24 hours after beginning therapy.
Some people, however, do not respond to the usual doses of penicillin. Therefore, it is important that people being treated for syphilis have periodic blood tests to check that the infectious agent has been completely destroyed.
In all stages of syphilis, proper treatment will cure the disease, but in late syphilis, damage already done to body organs cannot be reversed.
|The open sores
of syphilis may be visible and infectious during the active stages of
Any contact with these infectious sores and other infected tissues and body fluids must be avoided.
An infected person who has not been treated may infect others during the first two stages, which usually last 1 - 2 years.
As with many other STIs, methods of prevention include using condoms during sexual intercourse.
|The bacterium spreads
from the initial ulcer of an infected person to the skin or mucous membranes
of the genital area, the mouth, the anus, or broken skin anywhere on
the body of a sexual partner.
Affects 2 - 3 million Americans each year.
|The infection often
persists because the parasite rarely causes symptoms in men; reinfection
of women by untreated men is common.
Symptoms (if they occur) appear usually within 4 – 20 days of exposure
can usually be cured with prescription medication.
Treat both partners
Wash all moist areas (towels, toilet seats, etc) as Trich can live outside of the body
|Correct and consistent use of male condoms may prevent the spread of Trich.||Most common infection
|Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)||These infections
affect women more often than men because a woman's urethra is shorter
than a man's and bacteria may get to the bladder more easily.
A woman's urethra is also closer to the anus than a man's.
|Most often a health care provider will prescribe 3 days of antibiotic pills (to be taken as ordered). I f you experience 3 or more UTI's each year you may be placed on preventative antibiotics to reduce the chance of infection. You also may be referred to a urologist.||To prevent urinary
tract infections or discourage them from returning:
||UTIs are common
in women and men who are sexually active.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are caused by bacteria that have spread from the rectum to the vagina or penis and then to the urethra and bladder.
They may be sexually transmitted.
UTIs include infections of the:
Any kind of sex play that brings fecal material into contact with the vagina and urethra can trasmit the infection.
Unprotected anal intercourse is a very high-risk behavior for urinary tract infection.
Some women who use the diaphragm are susceptible to frequent UTIs.
Adjusting to the
bacterial environment caused by having new partners may lead to a
bladder infection called "honeymoon cystitis."
Medical term for inflammation of the vagina.
In the U.S., women seek medical attention for vaginitis 10 million times a year.
|Some women may
not display any symptoms.
Men have these symptoms less often than women, but both can pass the infection to one another.
||Each woman has
her own pattern of vaginal fluids. Learn your own normal pattern. Then
you will notice any changes that may mean you have vaginitis.
||Vaginitis has little to do with how clean you are. Bathing or douching will not cure vaginitis.|
Second most common type of vaginal infection.
symptoms may be similar to those of other infections, women are urged
to obtain a diagnosis from a healh care provider before treating
themselves with over-the-counter yeast remedies.
||Yeast infections are usually treated intravaginally with anti-yeast creams or suppositories. Drugs that act against yeast may also be prescribed in oral tablet form.||Although yeast infections often cause intense discomfort, prompting most sufferers to seek treatment, they have not been associated with serious health risks.|
How safe are condoms?
How do I put on a condom (male)?
How do I put on a condom (female)?
Do's and Dont's
If you decide to have sex, you can reduce your risk of infection by:
Talk to your partner. Find out:
What does NOT protect you:
American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology
National Vaginitis Association
American Social Health Association
American Academy of Dermatology
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)