What is Trichomonas Infection? Trichomonas infection is a sexually transmitted infectious disease that is also known as trichomoniasis. It is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases in the world and is caused by Trichomonas vaginalis, a parasite.
According to WHO statistics, more than 250 million people become infected each year. This makes it the most common non-viral sexually transmitted disease and more common than chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis. Unprotected intercourse is the cause of the transmission.
Trichomoniasis affects women slightly more often than men. The infection leads to inflammation of the mucous membranes of the genital organs and urinary tract. However, the disease often proceeds without pain and thus goes unnoticed. When symptoms occur, trichomoniasis manifests itself as itching or pain in the genital area and discharge . Trichomoniasis is treated with antibiotics and is easily curable if diagnosed early.
What is Trichomonas Infection?
Trichomonas infection is transmitted through sexual intercourse, through the parasite Trichomonas vaginalis. The pathogen settles mainly in damp areas of the body and can be found in the vagina, urethra and paraurethral glands in the event of an infection.
Without therapy, the pathogens can survive for years and because those affected are often symptom-free, the infection can spread quickly and unnoticed. An infection can be prevented by the consistent use of condoms.
If a trichomonas infection is diagnosed, the partner must always be treated as well. Antibiotic therapy with the active ingredient metronidazole is usually sufficient. The therapy is also suitable for trichomonas infections during pregnancy. However, during the course of treatment, those affected should refrain from sexual intercourse.
What Causes Trichomonas Infection?
The parasitic single cell Trichomonas vaginalis is one of the protozoa and is the cause of the infection. The pathogen is about 8 to 25 micrometers in size and belongs to the group of flagellates, which can move with their flagella.
Trichomonads are transmitted through contact with the mucous membrane during sex. A smear infection in the swimming pool, in the sauna or by sharing towels is unlikely. Without sexual intercourse, such as kissing, trichomonads are more likely not to be transmitted. The incubation time for trichomonads is around four to 28 days before the first possible symptoms can appear.
An infection is promoted by certain risk factors , such as a lack of estrogen in the vagina, damage to the vaginal flora by bacteria or forgotten tampons. Other previous illnesses that promote trichomoniasis are diabetes mellitus, immunosuppression , pregnancy , HIV infection or cancer. According to statistics, infection is more likely to happen if you change sexual partners. Infections with other sex diseases , such as chlamydia, often carry an additional risk of a trichomonad infection and an HIV infection.
What are the Symptoms:
In most cases, the infection is symptom-free . If symptoms do occur, they are often expressed as vaginal discharge, itching, or pain when urinating . The discharge is also often smelly, green, and foamy. Also, pain during intercourse may indicate trichomonas infection.
Trichomonads in men lead to symptoms even less frequently than in women. Symptoms include: itching in the genital area, discomfort when passing urine, and pain in the urethra, discharge or inflammation of the glans penis or foreskin. The infection can spread to the urinary bladder, prostate and epididymis via the urethra.
How does the Doctor Recognize a Trichomonas Infection?
Since trichomoniasis often goes unnoticed and without symptoms or symptoms, a reliable diagnosis can only be made on the basis of a physical examination and laboratory tests. Swelling and redness are the first signs.
Men must see a urologist or venereologist in suspected cases. Women can contact their gynecologist for a vaginal or urethral swab.
In the case of an acute infection, the mobile pathogens can already be seen under the microscope. The doctor makes a clear diagnosis of a trichomonas infection by examining secretions and urine. If a disease is found, all sexual partners must be informed and also tested.
How is Trichomonas Infection Treated?
After diagnosis, antibiotics with the active ingredient metronidazole or tinidazole are usually prescribed. Infected women can take the antibiotic either as a suppository in the vagina or in tablet form.
So that the infection does not spread again, the partner should always be treated as well. Sexual intercourse should be avoided during treatment.
How can I Prevent it?
The safest protection against a trichomonas infection is the constant and correct use of condoms during sexual intercourse. Getting infected with trichomonads without having sexual intercourse is unlikely.
Trichomonads cannot be transmitted orally. Infection with trichomonads is also relatively uncommon in saunas, swimming pools or toilets.
What are the Chances of Recovery?
The infection can usually be treated very well if diagnosed early; it is curable. Unfortunately, the sexually transmitted disease often runs without symptoms or symptoms and thus often remains undetected for years.
An untreated trichomonas infection can lead to secondary diseases. The possible consequences of a trichomonas infection include: inflammation of the fallopian tubes or prostate and an increased risk of infection with other sexually transmitted diseases.
During pregnancy, a Trichomonas infection can affect the newborn have. Possible complications here include premature births and low birth weight. After a treated infection, there is no immune protection against a new disease. There is no resistance to trichomonads.