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Infectious Diseases

RE: std

06/05/2005

Question:

how long to get rid of std?

Answer:

It depends upon which sexually transmitted disease you are talking about. HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), for example, is a sexually transmitted disease that you can't just "get rid of." Fortunately, many sexually transmitted diseases are treatable, but the treatment depends on what infection is causing the disease. There are diseases characterized by genital ulcers, such as Chancroid, genital Herpes Simplex Virus infections, Granuloma Inguinale (Donovanosis), Lymphogranuloma Venereum, and Syphilis. There are diseases characterized by urethritis and cervicitis, such as Chlamydial infections, Gonococcal infections, and diseases characterized by vaginal discharge, such as Bacterial Vaginosis, Trichomoniasis, and Vulvovaginal Candidiasis, as well as Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. Epididymitis, Proctitis, Proctocolitis, and Enteritis all may be sexually transmitted. Human Papillomavirus Infection may cause genital Warts or Cervical or Anal Cancers. Vaccine-preventable STDs include Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Hepatitis C can be transmitted sexually, but there is no vaccine to prevent it. Last, but not least, there are Ectoparasitic Infections, such as Pediculosis Pubis and Scabies. You should ask your doctor how long it takes to get rid of a sexually transmitted disease, because each of these different infections has a different course and requires different treatment. Keep in mind that it is not uncommon to catch more than one sexually transmitted disease at the same time, and that some sexually transmitted diseases can be caught over and over again, particularly if re-exposed to an infected partner who was not treated.

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Response by:

Lisa A Haglund, MD Lisa A Haglund, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati