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A new study from Preventx has found TV is disproportionately common among minority groups.
Unlike other STIs, TV has no symptoms.
However, in common with other STIs, it can cause serious complications if left untreated.
Complications in pregnant women include low birth weight and a premature birth.
The research by Preventx was presented at the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV annual conference.
Speaking about TV, Dr John White of Preventx said: “Trichomoniasis is a relatively unknown STI among the general population, but it can cause significant pain and discomfort.
“I know from the patients in my care that it can also cause a lot of emotional distress for the person infected too.”
Dr White added: “Women, in particular, can remain infected for years – and their distressing symptoms are often misdiagnosed or dismissed.”
Although TV can be asymptomatic, it can also cause symptoms in some patients.
Symptoms in women include:
• Abnormal vaginal discharge
• Producing more discharge than normal accompanied by a fishy smell
• Soreness, swelling, and itching around the vagina
• Pain or discomfort when peeing or having sex.
The STI can also cause symptoms in men, such as:
• Pain when urinating or ejaculating
• Needing to pee more frequently than usual
• Thin, white discharge from the penis
• Soreness, swelling, and redness around the head of the penis or foreskin.
Although unnerving like most infections, TV can be treated “quickly and easily” say the NHS with a course of antibiotics.
The health body adds: “Most people are prescribed an antibiotic called metronidazole which is very effective if taken correctly. You’ll usually have to take metronidazole twice a day, for five to seven days.”
As well as starting a course of antibiotics, the NHS say those affected should avoid having sex and encourage their current or recent sexual partners to get tested.
If said sexual partner is not treated, this increases the reinfection risk.
Meanwhile, the WHO (World Health Organisation) is investigating whether monkeypox should be classified as an STI as well as a viral infection after the virus was found in semen in two patients.
Doctors have reported patients showing signs of monkeypox in their semen in Germany and Italy.
Monkeypox Incident Manager for WHO/Europe, Catherin Smallwood, said: “This may have been something that we were unaware of in this disease before.
“We really need to focus on the most frequent mode of transmission and we clearly see that to be associated with skin-to-skin contact.”
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