Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection that typically shows few overt symptoms. The lack of apparent symptoms helps make it easily transmissible as people often do not realize they are infected.
Testing for chlamydia requires collecting a sample from inside the cervix or the tip of the penis. Chlamydia is easily treated with prescription antibiotics. If left untreated, it can spread throughout the body and cause lifelong health complications.
Gonorrhea is also a bacterial infection. Like chlamydia, antibiotics can quickly treat this problem. It can cause infertility when left untreated. It can also spread via genital contact, meaning it can be contracted without intercourse or body fluid exchange. Eye infection is rare but possible as well. Testing for gonorrhea requires using a swab to take a culture from the cervix or the tip of the penis. A doctor may also collect a urine sample.
Hepatitis A, B, and C
Hepatitis diseases take three forms – A, B, C. All forms attack the liver. Hepatitis A is usually not dangerous and often clears up on its own within a month or two of infection. Hepatitis B and C are highly contagious and potentially deadly diseases. People who have hepatitis rarely show obvious symptoms.
Hepatitis is spread during sex, but can also spread via blood, such as by needle sharing or from mothers to breastfeeding children. If you have never been exposed to hepatitis, you might consider receiving the hepatitis A and B vaccines.
There are two phases to hepatitis B and C – acute and chronic. Hepatitis B and C are curable with painkillers and bed rest. Wait too long to act, however, and you may develop chronic hepatitis. For hepatitis B, chronic treatment often focuses on minimizing additional liver damage throughout your life. If you have Hepatitis C, you may still be cured via a multi-month direct-acting antiviral (DAA) treatment. Hepatitis testing is done via blood draw. If you are interested in receiving testing or treatment for this type of STD, contact our gynecological office today.
Syphilis is one of the easiest STDs to identify due to its unique progression. If not noticed, however, it can permanently damage your health. Early syphilis can be treated with antibiotics.
It begins with sores or painless rashes in the genital areas several weeks after infection. Left untreated, you may feel feverish, ill, lose weight, and notice skin rashes spreading over your body. Eventually the rashes and sores disappear. Syphilis continues to damage your body, however. It could impact your brain, heart, nervous system, sight and hearing. Syphilis testing is done via blood draw.
HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)
HIV is a very dangerous disease impacting your autoimmune system. It is highly transmissible via sex. HIV is uncurable, but many treatments are available.
An HIV test is done via blood sample or oral swab, depending on the type of test the doctor uses. Treatment for HIV consists of taking antiretroviral therapy (ART) medicine. Most individuals with this disease can get their condition under control within six months.
HPV (Human Papillomavirus)
HPV is one of the most common STIs in the United States. The most dangerous kind is cancer-causing HPV, and displays no outward symptoms. Left untreated it can cause numerous reproductive and oral cancers. However, low-risk HPV results in genital warts, and is not cancer causing.
A health specialist can determine whether you have low-risk HPV by examining your genitals for warts. Cancer-causing HPV is easy to test for in women during a routine cervical screening. Currently there is no test for the most dangerous HPV in men. Cancer-causing HPV needs to be removed surgically and is treated like cancer. There are no known cures for the genital warts caused by low-risk HPV. However, there are topical creams to reduce pain.
HSV (Herpes Simplex)
HSV, most commonly known as herpes, is a very common STD. It is categorized into two types: HSV-1 (oral herpes) and HSV-2 (genital herpes). Genital herpes is usually only contracted through sexual contact with someone who already has the infection. Common symptoms of herpes are sores around the genitals or rectum, although they may occur in other locations as well. It is important to know that herpes can spread even if there aren’t any sores present. There is no cure for herpes but treatments can relieve symptoms. Medication can be used to reduce pain caused by an outbreak, shorten the healing time, and reduce the total number of outbreaks.