Symptoms Of STDs
Common Signs Of Sexually Transmitted Diseases

STDs pictures of stds

Stage two syphilis rash
Secondary Syphilis Rash

Chart of STD Symptoms


Genital Warts

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Sexually Transmitted Diseases

It's common for men and women to have a STD without any symptoms. So you might not know you have one. Even if you don't have symptoms, you are still contagious and can pass the disease onto your partner. STDs, including the ones that don't cause symptoms, can cause serious problems with your health later on. They can cause PID (pelvic inflammatory disease), infertility and even cervical cancer. STD testing is recommended to anyone who has had sexual relations with one or more partner. It is even more important to get tested if you have one or more signs of an STD.

Signs Of STDs

STD Signs in Women Signs in Men
Chlamydia can be transmitted via vaginal, anal and oral sex. It can also be passed from an infected mother to her baby during a vaginal childbirth.

If untreated, chlamydia can spread to the reproductive organs causing permanent damage. It can lead to chronic pelvic pain, infertility, and potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy. It also increases your chance of becoming infected with HIV, if exposed.

Chlamydia is the most common STD in the United States.
Silent disease: most experience no symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they will do so within 3 weeks of exposure. Possible symptoms include:

• Abnormal vaginal discharge.
• Pain on urination.
• Pelvic pain.
• Lower back pain
• Nausea.
• Fever.
Painful intercourse.
• Bleeding between menstrual periods.
Men with symptoms may have:

• Penis discharge.
• Burning sensation when urinating.
• Burning and itching around the opening of the penis.
• Pain and swelling of the testicles is uncommon.
Gonorrhea is a STD caused by bacterium. It spreads by sex (vaginal, oral and anal) as well as from a mother to her child during a vaginal childbirth. Untreated it can lead to PID, infertility and increased risk of ectopic pregnancy.

In men it can cause a painful condition called epididymitis, where the tubes attach to the testicles. In rare instances it can lead to male infertility. If untreated the infection can spread to the bones and joints and become fatal.
Most women do not experience symptoms. If symptoms do occur they are often mild and mistaken for a bladder or vaginal infection. Signs include:

• Pain or burning sensation when urinating.
• Increased vaginal discharge.
• Spotting between periods.
• Anal itching, soreness or bleeding.
Men are more likely to get symptoms (although many do not) than women. Common signs that usually appear within 2 weeks of infection are:

• Burning sensation when urinating.
• White, yellow, or green discharge from the penis.
• Painful or swollen testicles.
Genital Herpes
Transmission of genital herpes is easier from men to women than the other way around. As a result more women are infected (1 in 5 women aged 14 to 49 compared to 1 in 9 men). Genital herpes causes sores around the genitals, and if touched they can be transferred to another part of the body. It is caused by a virus, for which there is no cure. Instead the disease is managed. Women with a history of genital herpes are more likely to have a miscarriage or premature birth. It can also be passed from mother to child resulting in a potentially fatal infection called neonatal herpes. If you are pregnant and have the virus you may be offered an antiviral medication from week 36 of gestation through to delivery to reduce the risk of an outbreak.

Most women experience either no symptoms or have symptoms so mild they are missed or mistaken for another skin condition. If symptoms do occur they typically appear as a blister around the genital area, mouth or rectum. The blister bursts and leaves a sore which can take up to a month to heal. This is known as an outbreak. The first time you have an outbreak you may also have flu-like symptoms, swollen glands, fever and body aches. Repeat outbreaks are common in the first year of infection, over time the frequency reduces although the infection remains in the body. Same symptoms as women.
Syphilis is a STD that is caused by bacterium. Easily treated in the early stages, if untreated it can gradually destroy the internal organs leading to blindness, dementia and even death. It is passed from person to person through direct contact with a syphilis sore. Sores are mainly found in the genitals, anus and rectum but can also be found on the lips. It cannot be spread through toilet seats, swimming pools or bathtubs.
Early Stage:
Appearance of a single sore (called a chancre) but there could be multiple sores. Usually appears between days 10 and 90 (average 21 days) after exposure. The sore is small, firm and painless. It appears where the syphilis entered the body. It lasts about 3 to 6 weeks before healing naturally.
Secondary Stage:
If not treated a skin rash and lesions appear on one or more parts of the body. The rash can even appear while the chancre is still healing. It is not itchy but might appear as rough reddy skin on the bottom of the heels and palms of the hands - or all over the body. There may also be:
• Fever
• Swollen lymph glands
• Sore throat
• Patchy hair loss
• Headaches
• Weight loss
• Muscle aches and fatigue.
Late Stages
Symptoms may disappear and can reappear 10 to 20 years later. At this stage it can damage internal organs and even lead to death.
Same as women.
Trichomoniasis is a common STD, caused by a parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. It is easy to cure. The parasite is passed from one to another during sex. It is more common in younger women than in younger men. Also older women are more likely than younger women to have been infected.
Women are more likely than men to get symptoms; although 70 percent experience no symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they are likely to do so within 5 to 28 days of exposure and include:
• Red, itchiness around the vagina.
• Discomfort on urinating.
• Vaginal discharge which is thin, strange smelling and can be green, white, yellow or clear in color.
Men are less likely than women to experience symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they are likely to do so within 5 to 28 days of exposure and include:
• Itchiness inside the penis.
• Pain on urination or after ejaculation.
• Penis discharge.
Genital Warts
Genital warts are small cauliflower shaped growths that form on the genitals. They are transmitted by skin to skin contact and are caused by a particular strain of the HPV virus. There is no cure, instead outbreaks need to be managed.
Warts can appear on the skin around the vagina, on the vulva, in the vaginal canal and the cervix. Internal warts are likely to be missed. Warts have an incubation period and may not develop for up to 6 weeks after infection. Signs:
• Pink, red swellings that merge to form a cauliflower shape.
• Warts may be itchy but tend not to be painful.
Warts typically appear on the penis, occasionally on the scrotum or around the anus. Signs are the same as women.
HPV Infection
Genital human papillomavirus (HPV for short) is a common STD. There are more than 40 types of HPV that infect the genital area, mouth and throat. It is nothing to do with HIV (and AIDs). While both are viruses, they cause different symptoms and health problems. HPV is passed via vaginal, oral and anal sex. If untreated it can lead to genital warts and cervical cancer. It is diagnosed in women with a Pap smear test. Two vaccines (Cervarix and Gardasil) can protect women against the types of HPV that cause most cervical cancers.
Most women do not develop symptoms and in 90 percent of cases the body naturally cures itself within 2 years. In the remaining cases it can lead to genital warts or cervical cancer. It is also linked to vaginal cancer, vulva cancer and anal cancer. Most men do not develop symptoms and in 90 percent of cases the body naturally cures itself within 2 years. It can increase the risk of cancer of the penis and anus.
HIV is the deadly virus that causes AIDs. The HIV virus interferes with the body's ability to fight viruses, bacteria and other nasty things that cause disease. It is transmitted sexually.
Some (but not all) develop flu-like symptoms in the first 6 weeks of exposure.

Early signs include:
• Fever
• Headaches
• Sore throat
• Swollen lymph glands
• Rash
• Fatigue
These symptoms clear up again, and it may be another 10 years after the initial infection before you notice more severe symptoms such as:
• Fever
• Unexplained weight loss
• Diarrhea
• Swollen lymph nodes
• Cough and shortness of breath.

Later stages
• Persistent, unexplained fatigue
• Soaking night sweats
• Shaking chills or fever for several weeks
• Swelling of lymph nodes for more than three months
• Chronic diarrhea
• Continuous headaches
• Unusual infections
Many of the same symptoms as women, although women tend to get sick sooner than men.
Pubic Lice (Crabs)
Pubic lice are typically found attached to pubic hair but are sometimes found on coarse hair elsewhere on the body (like the eyelashes, eyebrows, beard, chest and armpits). They are not the same thing as head lice. Lice found in the pubic area are usually passed by sexual contact, although rarely they may be picked up from an infected toilet seat, more commonly they can be picked up from infected bed linen and towels.
Itching in the genital area.
Lice will be visible.
Same as women.
Human scabies is an infestation of the skin by the human itch mite. These tiny mites burrows into the upper layer of the skin where they live and lays eggs. Scabies spreads easily between sexual partners or within families.
The most common sign of scabies is severe itching (pruritus), especially at night, and a pimply rash. The itching and rash can affect the whole body or be limited to the wrist, elbow, armpit or spaces between fingers, the nipples and buttocks. Symptoms usually appear about 4 to 6 weeks after infection.
Crusted scabies is a severe form that occurs in older people. The person develops a gray crusty layer of skin that contains large numbers of mites and eggs.
Same as women, although mites can cause itching around the penis.
Chancroid is an STD caused by a bacteria infection. Relatively rare in the United States (less than 50 cases a year), it is more common in tropical and third world countries.
Women are less likely than men to develop symptoms. Signs include a raised sore(s) on the vulva, vagina or inner thigh. It looks like early stage syphilis or genital herpes. If untreated local lymph glands become infected and can burst through the skin as large weeping sores. Men are more likely than women to develop sores - usually on the penis or scrotum.

  Related Articles on STDs

For more health advice, see the following:

STD Prevention: How to reduce your risks.

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