They are infectious diseases that are transmitted through sexual contact (penis, vagina, mouth, or anus). Formerly it was called venereal diseases and currently, they are called Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs).
The most appropriate terminology is Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) since they are infections that are spread through sexual intercourse, but in many cases, they do not cause disease.
What are the most common STDs?
In men, the most frequent STIs are:
- Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is growing at a very high rate. In the section “ Human Papillomavirus in Men ” HPV infection in men is explained in detail.
- Chlamydia: In the USA, 1.7 million new cases are detected each year.
- Gonorrhea: Very common in young people, with half a million new cases a year in the USA
- Syphilis: If not treated properly, it can cause very severe complications.
- Genital Herpes: It is an infection that evolves into outbreaks and can be very annoying
- Mycoplasma hominis and Genitalium: They are growing in recent years.
- HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is responsible for AIDS and is the most serious STD.
What to do if infected by an STD?
STDs are usually very contagious and sometimes cause no symptoms. A person infected with an STD can transmit the disease to the partners with whom they have sexual relations (vaginal, oral, or anal) Often they do not produce symptoms, especially in women.
And in this case, all people who have sexual relations will be infected if they don’t use a condom. There is an erroneous belief that STIs are not spread through oral sex.
If you have the slightest doubt that you are infected, you should:
- Do not have sexual intercourse until instructed by the doctor.
- Consult with a doctor who is an expert in STDs
- Do not self-medicate, as an inappropriate antibiotic can mask the disease and delay correct diagnosis and treatment.
- Don’t hide the problem. A late diagnosis can cause serious complications for you and your partner.
- We recommend performing a smear swab of the lesions and serology to diagnose or rule out an STD. We guarantee confidentiality and understanding.
- If the tests are positive, in addition to receiving treatment you should contact people with whom you have recently had sex
How diagnose an STD?
If you have had sexual intercourse with an unusual partner or have any symptoms, you should consult a specialist: sexologist, urologist (man), or gynecologist (woman).
Dr. PK Gupta – Sexologist in Delhi, India is an expert in the diagnosis and treatment of STIs. In the first consultation, we take a sample of the lesion (smear swab) and send it to a laboratory that uses PCR techniques for the diagnosis of STIs.
After taking the sample and according to our clinical diagnosis, we will indicate the most appropriate treatment. In patients who maintain relationships with different partners or risk contacts, we will indicate the performance of a blood test (serology) in a trusted laboratory.
In a few days, with the definitive result of the laboratory, we see the patient again, we inform him of the result of the test and we assess his evolution. Sometimes the result is negative, there is no infection.
If the result is positive, we will precisely know the responsible germ and, if necessary, we will adjust the treatment. In the event of infection, we will advise you to notify partners with whom you have recently had sexual contact.
In cases of suspected mouth-throat infection, we will take the sample (swab) and send it to the laboratory.
Complications if don’t treat STDs
Of course. Untreated urethritis can lead to a stricture (urethral stricture) that may require surgery to resolve.
It is a syphilis infection, if left untreated, the ulcer disappears and the disease remains latent and eventually (10 to 30 years) can cause tertiary syphilis with very serious consequences, including death.
In women, chlamydial infection can go unrecognized and trigger pelvic inflammatory disease that can lead to infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain.
A person infected with an STD, if condoms are not used, can transmit the infection to the partners with whom they have sexual relations (vaginal, oral, anal), who become carriers of the infection. On many occasions, especially in women, STDs may not initially produce symptoms, but in the long term, they can favor the development of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, Infertility, etc.
Genital Herpes is a chronic disease that produces recurrences (it can be repeated from time to time) and is transmitted to the partner if a condom is not used. In people who carry the herpes simplex virus, daily use of an antiviral can reduce the risk of transmitting genital herpes.
AIDS can be a very serious disease and can produce a wide variety of symptoms. You can be an asymptomatic carrier, or infections or tumors can appear. If there is direct contact with semen, blood, or vaginal secretions of a person at risk of being a carrier of HIV, you should consult early.
The presence of STDs (syphilis, chlamydia, gonococcus, herpes virus) increases the risk of HIV infection. In turn, HIV infection favors herpes and syphilis infection.
How are STDs treated?
- Treatment depends on the germ causing the infection. Each STD has a specific treatment.
- An exact diagnosis that allows a specific treatment is essential.
- In urethritis, treatment will depend on the responsible germ (chlamydia, gonococcus, or mycoplasma).
- Syphilitic chancre needs a specific antibiotic
- Genital Herpes is treated with antivirals, creams,s and pills.
- Examination and treatment of sexual partners are essential to avoid reinfection, prevent complications and limit the spread of the disease in society.
How to prevent STDs?
The only sure way to avoid STDs is to not have vaginal, oral, or anal sex. In sexually active people, to reduce the chances of contracting STDs, it is advisable to:
- Having a single partner (both in a monogamous relationship) who is not infected by an STD, we offer men who are going to start a new relationship the possibility of carrying out a check-up to check that they are not STD carrier
- Use condoms from the beginning of sexual intercourse and in all oral, vaginal, and anal intercourse.
- If you think you may be a carrier of an STD, you should refrain from having sexual intercourse and consult an expert doctor who will diagnose and treat you.
- If you have sex with more than one partner, you should protect yourself and get tested for STDs and HIV regularly.
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in STIs. In addition, there is a tendency to change partners frequently or maintain relationships with several partners.
In these men with frequent sexual relations and different partners, the CDC of Atlanta (USA) advises carrying out regular checks for STDs. For these people, we offer the possibility of carrying out a regular check-up for STIs through:
- Blood tests (serology)
- Swab-smear of the penis
- Throat swab (only if you perform oral sex on your partner.
Tips for STDs
- An infected person can spread the disease to partners with whom they have sexual intercourse (vaginal, oral, anal).
- Oral sex can spread STIs bidirectionally.
- The main advice is to prevent: use a condom from the beginning.
- Before the slightest possibility of contagion by STD consult a specialist.
- STDs. can cause long-term complications if not diagnosed and treated promptly.
- We are specialists in the study of STDs. in men and we offer confidentiality and understanding. In men who frequently change partners, we recommend regular check-ups for STIs. In men who are going to start a new relationship, we offer an STI check-up.