Every year, one million U.S. women will become infected with pelvic inflammatory disease, also known as PID, an infection or inflammation of various reproductive organs. Yikes! This common disease can cause many other problems, including infertility and other conditions that may lead to death. Sorry for the quick scare, but it’s true, and you should know. Thankfully, the proper prevention and care can help prevent those complications.
- It’s normal for certain amounts and types of bacteria to reside in the vaginal area. However, sex and douching can cause them to get pushed further inside the body where they don’t belong. This can cause PID. Having sex with multiple partners, a partner who has multiple partners, or a partner who has an STD can greatly increase the risk. Bacterial STDs, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, are common factors in PID cases.
- Unfortunately, more than half of all PID cases go undetected until the damage has been done. Many times there are few to no symptoms, especially in PID that occurs from chlamydia. Ladies, if you’re experiencing fever, pain during intercourse or urination, abdominal pain, or irregular bleeding during your menstrual cycle, it’s time to get tested ASAP. A rare pain also can occur in the upper abdominal region.
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Many people have heard of hepatitis C from Naomi Judd’s public battle with the disease and her crusade to make people aware of it. However, there are seven additional forms of hepatitis in existence that few people are aware of, including the kind you can get from having sex.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hepatitis is the inflammation of the liver, but it’s not quite that simple.
- There are eight different types of hepatitis, viral and nonviral. Hepatitis B is the type is primarily transmitted through sexual contact. It can be acute or chronic, and acute hepatitis B can become chronic, resulting in long-term health problems and even death.
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April is STD Awareness Month, which should serve as a yearly reminder to get tested for STDs if you’re sexually active. When you make your annual trip to the gyno, your doc will probably give you a Pap smear, check your boobs for lumps, and inspect your lady parts for abnormalities. But your gynecologist won’t test you for anything else, unless you ask — so ask! Here’s what tests you should be getting. Keep reading »
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the virus that causes AIDS in the later stages of the disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one million people in the United States are infected with HIV/AIDS, and about a quarter of those people don’t know they’re infected. Approximately 39.5 million people are infected with HIV worldwide. With those high numbers, it’s important that everyone knows how HIV spreads and how to avoid contracting the virus.
- HIV attacks the immune system by destroying white blood cells that fight off disease. Once HIV has weakened the immune system to the point where the body can’t fight off infection, the infection advances to its final stage: AIDS. It can take years for the body to arrive at this stage. People infected with HIV/AIDS usually die of other so-called “opportunistic” diseases and cancers that the body can no longer fight off.
- HIV lives in the blood and semen or vaginal fluid of the infected person. This is why the most common ways of transmitting HIV is through vaginal, oral, or anal intercourse. The second most common way of transmitting HIV is through the sharing of needles and syringes. Lastly, HIV can be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth, and breast-feeding. Because HIV is carried in the infected person’s blood, the virus can also be transmitted through blood transfusions, organ and tissue transplants, and shared needles. HIV is not transmitted through handshaking, hugging, contact with a toilet seat, touching a doorknob, or casual contact, and HIV cannot live outside the body for long.
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German pop singer Nadja Benaissa was arrested Tuesday in Frankfurt, Germany, for allegedly having unprotected sex with three men without telling them she is HIV positive. One of the men has tested positive for the virus. In Germany, the law says that anyone convicted of knowingly infecting a person with HIV faces a prison sentence of between six months and 10 years for “grievous bodily harm.” If the victim dies, the sentence can be even greater — up to life imprisonment for manslaughter.
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It’s STD Awareness Month! We’ve been talking a lot about the icky stuff you can get while bumping uglies, while Dr. V has urged you to have as much fun as you want, so long as you wear a condom. In the past, we’ve talked to the guys on our IM about how often they actually use condoms, but we’ve never grilled them about how often they get tested for STDs. And what I really wanted to know was how often they were actually honest when a potential sex partner asked them that question. Let’s find out… Keep reading »
Gonorrhea is one of the most commonly sexually transmitted diseases (STD), with about 700,000 people being infected each year in the United States. In 2006, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 120.9 per 100,000 people in the U.S. were infected with gonorrhea. With that in mind, here’s five things you need to know about the disease.
1. Gonorrhea is normally spread through sexual activity. The bacteria grow in warm areas of the reproductive track, especially the cervix, urethra, uterus, anus, and fallopian tubes. Gonorrhea can be found in both women and men, and therefore is spread through vaginal, oral, and anal intercourse.
2. Many people infected with gonorrhea don’t know they’re infected, and that’s why it’s so easily spread! The symptoms of gonorrhea are very mild and sometimes absent in both men and women, making them perfect carriers for the disease. The most common symptoms of gonorrhea are a burning sensation and pain during urination, and vaginal/penile discharge. If you notice any of these symptoms, contact a doctor immediately to be tested to avoid further spreading of the disease, because Gonorrhea also has long-term effects on those who don’t seek early treatment. It’s a common cause of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, which causes pain in the abdomen and fever. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease also can cause infertility in women. Those infected with gonorrhea are more likely to contract HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. Lastly, pregnant women infected with gonorrhea can spread the disease to their newborn baby. Gonorrhea in newborns can cause blindness and life-threatening blood infections. Keep reading »
Trichomoniasis is a very common STD among both men and women. Ladies, that hot guy you met at the club last night can spread it to you without ever knowing he has it. You also could unknowingly give it to him. Trichomoniasis can weaken the immune system and make an infected person more susceptible to other STDs, including HIV. Pregnant women who are infected are at risk for delivering early or having a baby with low birth weight. Are you thinking twice about your sexual behavior now?
1. Both men and women can be infected, but because men often experience few to no symptoms, it can seem to only affect women. That is so untrue.
2. Trichomoniasis spreads easily and quickly. Because symptoms of trichomoniasis are often mild to nonexistent, this STD can be spread quickly and easily. It is one of the more common STDs. Women are more likely to have symptoms than men are, but both can be infected.
3. Symptoms often are mild or nonexistent, but women should look for abnormal discharge. If you’re smelling a bit foul down there, that’s also a sign of infection. There may be pain or discomfort during urination or sex. Itching or other genital irritations also may occur. Men don’t usually have symptoms, but some include burning or irritation during urination or an unusual discharge. Keep reading »