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Old January 9th, 2009, 05:27 PM   #1
Daily Adventurer
Atonement's Forum Picture
Name: Addison
Join Date: September 26, 2007
Location: Espaa (from USA)
Gender: Male
Default Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Welcome to the VT STD Guide. This is a guide to help you to learn what the different types of STD's are and how they potentially could be treated if you think you might have one. Remember, this is only a guide, if you think you might have contracted an STD you should see a doctor.

I'll open with some basic statistics:
  • One in five people in the United States has an STD.
  • Two-thirds of all STDs occur in people 25 years of age or younger.
  • One in four new STD infections occur in teenagers
  • You are fourtimes more likely to get an STD than pregnant.

How can I prevent getting a STD?

The best way to prevent getting a STD is to not have sex. There are many other ways to be intimate in a romantic relationship without having sex. Try massaging, cuddling, or kissing (this is safe as long as both partners don't have cuts or sores in the mouth).

If you do decide to have sex, you should have sex with only one partner who only has sex with you and who has never injected drugs. Remember, the more partners you have, the greater risk of being exposed to a STD. You should ask your partner if he/she has a STD, has been exposed to one, or has physical symptoms that could mean a STD. You should not have sex with anyone that has signs of a STD (sores, rashes, or discharge from the genital area). It is also possible that your partner may have a STD without having any symptoms and could pass it on to you. If you think your partner could have a STD, even if he/she doesn't show symptoms, have him/her get tested before the two of you have sex. You should also get yearly Pap smears and tests for STDs, even if you have no symptoms.

You need to make sure that you use a new latex condom correctly every time you have oral, anal, or vaginal sex. If you are allergic to latex, use a polyurethane male or female condom. Condoms are your best and only protection against STDs, although they still aren't 100% effective. Along with a condom, you should also use a water-based lubricant to keep the condom from breaking. Never use lubricants that contain oil or fat, like petroleum jelly or cooking oil. These products weaken latex and can cause the condom to break. Some STDs can't be cured, so you should always practice safer sex. Safer sex means finding ways to be intimate while lowering the risk of spreading a STD. This means preventing the passing of body fluids such as blood, semen, and vaginal fluids, and avoiding direct oral, anal, or genital contact (by using a latex condom).

Other ways you can prevent getting a STD include:

Don't inject drugs.
Avoid alcohol or drugs, since they can make you more likely to take chances with sex.
Don't douche, since this can cause germs to travel further up into your vagina.

Signs that you should consult a doctor about a possible STD:
  • Burning during urination or ejaculation
  • Sores on the genital region or mouth
  • Warts on the genitals, anus, or mouth
  • Yellow eyes
  • Intense itching of pubic region
  • Heavier than normal discharge sometimes accompanied by an odd odor
  • Pus oozing from the tip of penis or vagina.
  • Extreme fatigue.

Any medical doctor can give an STD test.

If you are concerned that you could have a STD or STI, It is highly recommened that you refrain from sex until you see a doctor.

Also, if you do find out that you have contracted an STD, the mature and appropriate thing to do is to let any partners you have had since and approximately two weeks before symptoms started, that they need to get tested too to help stop the spread.

If you have a dedicated partner, do not think that there is zero chance of being in contact with an STD since they can be spread by more than just sex. If you have an STD, make sure you have your partner tested and treated before resuming sexual interaction.

Now, this is a guide to help educate you of the different type of STDs out there. If you may match some of these symptoms, you should see a doctor. Do not self diagnose because only a doctor can do that.

AIDS/HIV (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome/Human Immunodeficiency Virus)
Description: HIV selectively attacks the immune cells in the human body. Once an HIV infection occurs, it spreads to all the cells of the immune system, destroying them as it goes. AIDS is a very late stage of HIV.
Symptoms: Most people with HIV have no symptoms. They can feel fine for years. The first set of symptoms may include: fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, drastic weight loss, light sweating, diarrhea, swollen glands, cough, sores, and yeast infections.
Cause: AIDS is caused by a virus call Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).
Transmission: It is spread when blood, semen, or vaginal fluid of a person who has the virus get directly into another person’s body, usually during sex or by sharing needles. HIV can get into another person's blood system through a break in the skin. Sores and the thin, wet skin near the sex organs are easy places for the virus to get into the body.
Treatment: You can get a course of prescribed medication that will prevent the virus from attacking, when you visit your doctor within 48 hours of being exposed. The treatment is over two days and the side effects are painful and can last up to two weeks. If you aren't fortunate enough to catch the virus in time, there is no cure for HIV or AIDS at this time. However, some people take medicines that can help the immune system. Some get treated for infections that affect the lungs. Pregnant Women with HIV can take certain drugs that improve the chance that they won't give HIV to their babies. There are new treatments announced often.
Complications: Complications include: increasing debilitation, death and can affect children born into HIV infected mothers.
Note: Since 1985, hospital blood supplied have been tested and protected from HIV. Clean needles that are used at blood donation centers are used only one time and disposed of carefully. They have never spread HIV. But, needles that have been used by people with HIV for shooting drugs can infect other people.
Some Stats:
  • Number of people living with HIV/AIDS 36.1 million
  • Number of people living with HIV/AIDS who are men 18.3 million
  • Number of people living with HIV/AIDS who are women 16.4 million
  • Number of people living with HIV/AIDS who are children 1.4 million

Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
Description: BV is a vaginal infection.
Symptoms: Although some women have no symptoms, others may notice a thin, watery discharge that is slightly gray or yellow. This may be accompanied by a "fishy" odor. There may also be mild itching and burning in the vulvar area. Infected men usually have no symptoms of BV and can unknowingly infect their partners.
Cause: BV is caused by the germ Gardnerella vaginalis mixed with other germs.
Transmission: This is usually transmitted through sexual contact. Including but not limited to penetration.
Treatment: Flagyl vaginal cream (Metro-Gel Vaginal) is an effective treatment for BV. Another antibiotic vaginal cream, Clindamycin (Cleocin), also seems to be effective against BV. Since BV is usually sexually transmitted, it is important that the partner of the infected woman also receive treatment by taking Flagyl pills.
Complications: Doctors are concerned about the association of BV and premature or low birth weight babies. The bacteria that cause BV are sometimes found in the lining of the uterus and fallopian tubes of women who have pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). It is not known if bacterial vaginosis is a direct cause of PID.
  • An estimated 16% of pregnant women have BV.

Candidasis (yeast infection, monilia)
Description: This is a common vaginal infection.
Symptoms: Women complain of itching, redness, and burning. Painful urination and a dry or painful feeling during sex may be noticed. If there is any discharge, it can look like "cottage cheese". This infection can also be passed to her partner where it causes itching and irritation to the penis.
Cause: When antibiotics are given to treat STDs and other diseases, this can upset the normal vaginal balance and cause a yeast infection. Hormone changes during pregnancy, use of birth control, and menstruation can also cause yeast to increase.
Transmission: It is transmitted through sexual contact including but not limited to penetration. Also, it can include direct contact with the infection site.
Treatment: The goal is to bring back a balance among all yeast and the bacteria that are needed on a normal vagina. This is complicated, so plan on working with your doctor on a treatment plan that is right for you.
Note: Although this is curable, it may have to be treated more than once.
Complications: One problem with buying yeast treatment without having a medical checkup is that another disease may be causing the yeast overgrowth such as HIV/AIDS, mononucleosis, cancer treatments, steroids, stress, and nutrient deficiency, among many others.

Description: This is the most common bacterial STD (in the USA). The tiny tubes of the reproductive system can become scarred and blocked as the body fights this infection.
Symptoms: An estimated 50% of men and 75% of women who carry this disease have no symptoms. If any symptoms do occur, they begin one to three weeks after having sex with a person who has the disease. Some men may have a very slight discharge from the penis or a burning feeling while urinating. Women may have a little more vaginal discharge than usual or very slight bleeding at times when this is not normal. A burning feeling when urinating, abdominal pain, or a low fever are other symptoms.
Cause: It is caused by bacteria.
Transmission: This is usually transmitted during intercourse. It can also be passed from mother to baby during birth.
Treatment: This is a curable disease if treated in time. If an individual tests positive but has no pain or symptoms, a doctor will treat the patient with antibiotics. If there are accompanying symptoms, they will also pursue the more aggressive laparoscopic testing of the fallopian tubes. One problem is that an estimated 20% of women who have had the treatment are left with the infection in their fallopian tubes. If there are no symptoms or pain after treatment, it is unlikely that she and her doctor will pursue the more aggressive treatment.
Note: It is extremely important for her partner to be treated even if he has no symptoms, or she will be infected again.
Complications: In women, untreated chlamydia is a major cause of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), can damage the reproductive organs, which can result in sterility. One potentially fatal complication of PID is ectopic or tubal pregnancy, which occurs when a fertilized egg implants in a location other than inside the uterus, often in the fallopian tub. In men, untreated chlamydia can result in epididymitis, an inflammation near the testicles, which can result in infertility. It can also result in NGU (Non-Gonococcal Urethritis), an inflammation of the urethra. During the birth process, babies can get eye, ear, and lung infections that can lead to blindness, deafness, and breathing problems (respectively).
Statistics: In the UK, Chlamydia is the most common STD, with one in ten people being infected.

Description: Gonnorhea is one of the most common bacterial STDs.
Symptoms: An estimated 50% of women have no symptoms. A woman may have a discharge from the vagina, or a slight burning sensation when urination. Often this is not noticed because it is so mild. the most common symptom for men is pus dripping form the penis. Symptoms for both men and women from anal intercourse include diarrhea, discharge, painful bowel movements, and itching. Symptoms from oral sex include a sore, scratchy feeling in the throat. Other symptoms include high fever, skin rashes, even arthritis.
Cause: Gonnorrahea is caused by pus-producing bacteria. It is high communicable.
Transmission: Gonorrhea is passed from person to another during sex, including oral and anal sex.
Note: Having this disease once does not protect a person from getting it again.
Treatment: Because strains of gonorrhea have been found in all fifty states, a drug called ceftriaxone (Rocephin) or one of the newer cephalo-sporin antipiotics is usually prescribed. If a woman develops pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), she may need to be hospitalized for intensive antibiotic therapy. Because this infection maybe be passed during the birthing process, all newborns in the USA routinely have their eyes washed with a 2% silver nitrate solution.
Note: It is important that your partner(s) get treatment.
Complications: If no treatment is given, men and women can pass gonorrhea into the bloodstream and then into a joint, resulting in septic arthritis. In women, an untreated infection may cause painful urination or swelling near the vagina. It can also result in PID, which can lead to sterility. In men, an untreated infection can develop scarring in the urethra. If the urethra becomes blocked by scars, urination becomes impossible and painful dilatations must be done. This disease can also be passed on to a baby during birth and cause blindness if not treated properly.

Hepatitis B
Description: Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver. It is a virus.
Symptoms: For many people, there are no symptoms at all. Symptoms that may occur include: yellow color in the skin and eyes, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, or extreme fatigue.
Cause: There are many causes for this infection, including drugs, toxins, and viruses.
Transmission: This disease is transmitted by having sex or sharing a needle with an infected person transmits this disease. Touching an infected person’s open sore, or sharing a razor, toothbrush, or nail clipper can be dangerous. Even tiny amounts of blood or other body fluids will spread the virus if contact occurs.
Note: It is not spread through food, water, or casual contact.
Complications: The longer the virus is present, the greater the chance of liver damage, live failure, or liver cancer.

Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV, Genital Herpes)
Description: Genital herpes is a common infection caused by herpes simplex virus which can infect both the mouth and the genitals.
Symptoms: Most infected persons never recognize the symptoms of genital herpes; some will have symptoms shortly after infection and never again. In women, the blisters and sores may appear on the vulva, inside the vagina, on the cervix, or in the anal region. These sores may itch, burn, or cause pain. Flu-like symptoms are sometimes felt. In men, the blisters and sores caused by the genital herpes virus may appear on the penis, scrotum, or anus.
Cause: Herpes is caused by a virus. Herpes simplex type I virus causes more oral infections. Herpes simplex type II causes most genital herpes. Both types can give you sores in either place.
Transmission: Genital Herpes is almost always contracted through intercourse or other intimate physical contact.
Note: It is possible to contract herpes from an infectious person even when no sore is present.
Treatment: Medications such as Zovirax in ointment or capsule form can reduce the troublesome aspects of herpes or help prevent recurrent episodes of herpes—but cannot cure it.
Complications: Most people who develop herpes in the genital area will continue to have outbreaks for life. The first outbreak is the most severe. The outbreaks that occur after the first one usually heal faster and are less painful. There is very little medical danger unless a person has an impaired immune system. There is also danger if it infects a person’s eyes or brain or infects a newborn baby.

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
Description: HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease. It is best known for the venereal warts (condyloma) it causes.
Symptoms: Many people are not aware of their infection. At least half or infected people have no visible warts. Genital warts can grow inside or outside the penis, on the testicles, on the cervix area, in the anal area, or more rarely, in the mouth. The warts can be soft, hard, raised, flat, small, large, single, or grouped in cauliflower-like clusters. Warts can look darker, lighter, or the same as skin color.
Cause: HPV is caused by viruses. There are more than eighty types.
Transmission: HPV or Human Papillomavirus grows best in moist areas of the body—and grows better in women than in men. The virus is mixed in with the sexual secretions of men and women and can grow on moist skin. That is why it is so easily spread even by genital contact that does not include penetrative sex.
Treatment: There are several ways to treat HPV, but no medical cure. If venereal warts are present, there are special types of acid available to treat them. Multiple treatments are often necessary. If the acid treatments are not successful, freezing the warts, using the laser, or cutting away the warts can be tried. If the warts persist, multiple injections of interferon may be tried. Venereal warts may disappear after the simplest treatment, while others may require years of treatment.
Complications: The main concern about HPV is that several studies have shown that HPV infection is closely related with the development of cervical cancer. Approximately 25 types of HPV can infect the genital area. These types are divided into “high risks” and “low risk” groups based on whether they are associated with cancer. Infection with a “high risk” type of HPV is one risk factor for cervical caner, which causes 4,500 deaths among women each year.

Nonspecific Urethritis
Description: Nonspecific urethritis is a urethral infection from an STD organism. It is comparable to vaginitis in females.
Symptoms: This infection usually results in a slight burning during urination and a urethral discharge with a slight amount of pus. If a man has a gonorrhea infection, his discharge may be heavy. If he has a chlamydia infection, the discharge may be mild with little or no burning during urination.
Cause: Nonspecifc urethritis is caused from an STD organism, usually chlamydia or gonorrhea.
Transmission: This is transmitted through sexual contact including but not limited to penetration.
Treatment: Most cases can be treated and cured by medication.
Complications: An infection from gonorrhea can cause scarring, so sever that a man cannot urinate or ejaculate. In these cases, surgery may be required to rebuild a tube for urination and ejaculation. A chlamydia infection causes only a slight discharge. The real danger lies in passing this to a partner, which can result in complicates, such as sterility form Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID).

Pubic Lice (crabs)
Description: Pubic lice is a type of lice that is adapted to the spacing and shape of coarse hair, including pubic hair, eyelashes, eyebrows and thicker leg and armpit hair on males.
Symptoms: Some people see the lice (small, brown and insect-like) or eggs (have the appearance of tiny pearl droplets). Some people have intense itching. As a result of the unavoidable scratching, the small pores may begin to ooze pus. Some people may also see tiny blood spots in their underwear.
Cause: Pubic lice is caused by a parasite of the skin.
Transmission: You can get pubic lice from sexual contact. You can also get them from contact with infected clothing or bedding.
Treatment: Effective treatment is available. Medicated shampoo is most often used to kill the parasite. Talk with the pharmacist or your doctor so you know how to properly use the products. If itching continues for more than a week, a second treatment may be necessary. In addition, it is necessary to wash all clothing, towels, and bedding in order to avoid reinfection. Dry cleaning or removing items from body contact for ten days will also kill lice and eggs. Most people believe that shaving the hair can rid you of the infestation, but this is untrue as the parasites are embedded beneath the skin and will wait for the hair to grow back.
Complications: Other than the possibility of intense itching and the annoyance, there are no additional medical complications.

Description: Scabies is a skin infestation caused by mites.
Symptoms: The first symptoms is itching, especially at night. Scabies can look exactly like other skin rashes. Two people who have scabies might have very different reactions to the chemical given off by the mites.
Cause: Scabies are caused by a mite (Sarcopetes scabiei), a parasite of the skin.
Transmission: Scabies is passed on from one person to another by direct skin-to-skin contact. Bedding or undergarments can transmit it only if they have been infected immediately before hand.
Treatment: Treatment includes applying a specific drug, such as Lindane, to all areas of the body, except the head. After eight hours, the infected person should rinse and clean thoroughly his or her body and put on clean clothing. This treatment is not recommended for pregnant of nursing women.
Complications: Other than being annoying, Scabies is not dangerous. However, if the skin becomes severely irritated from scratching, a bacterial infection called impetigo can develop. This can lead to gomerulo-nephritis, a kidney disease.

Description: Syphilis is a very serious bacterial infection.
Symptoms: The Primary Stage lasts two to six weeks. Painless sores called chancres may appear on the skin of the vulva, in the vagina, or on the penis, in the mouth, or on the lips. Sympoms in the Secondary Stage begins to go away in about two weeks. These symptoms may include swelling of the lymph nodes, rashes, low-grade fever, and fatigue. Some lfuid may ooze from raised growths called condyloma lata. These growths may appear in the mouth, beneath the breasts, or under the arms. In the Early Latent Stage, there are no outward symptoms of syphilis, and it lasts about one year. When syphilis reaches the Late Latent Stage, silent goes on until treatment or death.
Cause: Syphilis is an infection caused by a germ called a spirochete.
Transmission: The syphilis organism dies quickly if it is not in a warm, moist environment. It can be transmitted only from one moist area to another. Syphilis infection begins at the moment of contact. While the most common mode of transmission is intercourse or genital contact, any contact with broken skin is an open highway for the syphilis organism.
Treatment: The standard treatment for syphilis is penicillin, a drug that continues to be 100% effective in killing the organism that causes the disease. For those who are allergies to penicillin, there are other alternative antibiotics.
Note: Although the effects of syphilis will not get worse once the individual is diagnosed and treated, the harm has already been done and cannot be reversed.
Complications: If syphilis is no diagnosed and treated, it will silently destroy the infected person’s body. Some of the more common devastating medical problems that can occur are: damage to the heart, central nervous system, kidneys, eyes, bones and brain. One other threat that occurs during all the stages of syphilis is damage to the unborn child of an infected mother. Without treatment, some of the possible effects are miscarriages or stillbirths, or some will have a permanent abnormality.

All you need is love.

Last edited by Oblivion; January 11th, 2009 at 07:32 PM.
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