Cause: Trichomoniasis, or “trich”, is caused by a parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. It is transmitted through semen and vaginal fluids through unprotected vaginal sex. It is commonly found in the vagina in women and the urethra in men.
Symptoms: Often symptoms are unnoticeable, especially in men. If symptoms do occur, the appear 4-28 days after getting the infection. Common symptoms are:

  • Vaginal itching with redness
  • Unusual vaginal discharge
  • Discomfort when urinating.
  • Men may experience a burning feeling when urinating, fluid coming from the penis, or redness at the end of the penis.

Complications: If untreated, trich can increase the chance of getting a pelvic infection or other STIs and HIV. It may also affect fertility and cause low sperm count in men.
Testing: Tests are usually accurate 4-28 days after exposure. A urine sample will be collected and a vaginal swab may be done.
Treatment: Antibiotic pills. You will need to take the pills exactly as prescribed and finish all the pills even if you feel better.

You should tell anyone that you have had sex with in the past two months so they can be treated. Partners are almost always given medication, whether or not they have symptoms.
The University Health Center can test for STIs. You will need to wait 2 weeks since your potential exposure to the infection UNLESS your partner has called telling you that they have tested positive. If that is the case, make an appointment right away. You can also get barrier contraceptive methods here for free.

The Women’s Resource Center offers a variety of barrier contraceptive measures for free!

Center For Disease Control on Trichomoniasis

 

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