Written by medical and health professionals
Written by health professionals: M.D., Psychologist, and others - easy to read. Std's can infect anyone, whether sexually active or not.
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The professionals behind StdsAndYou.com

Donald Urquhart,(BA & DipAppPsy), Fully Registered Psychologist..

Michael T. Sapko, M.D., Ph.D., professional medical writer, who goes to great lengths to get updated and relevant information into his articles.

Loni Ice, (CphT), Certified Pharmacy Technician - the one behind the counter you ask for help from with your std problem.

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Bacterial STD & STI Contents THIS Page

Bacterial STD Sexually Transmitted Diseases

The Std Bacterial Vaginosis

The Std Gonorrhea

The Std Chlamydia

The Chancroid STD
The Std, Donovanosis
Enteritis and Proctocolitis Stds
STD Neonatal Sepsis and Postpartum Fever
Stds and Postpartum Fever and Meningitis
The Std Shigellosis
Trichomonal Vaginitis Std
Urethritis Std
STD and STI Bacterial References

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Bacterial STD Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Bacterial is the most common variety of STD and, fortunately, the easiest to treat if seen to promptly.

These STDs can be completely eliminated with a course of antibiotics.

With these, the most important things are to go in to the doctor at the first hint something's wrong and to take the entire course of medication, even if you think you no longer need it. Taking a short course of antibiotics or antifungals is a great way to breed a medication-resistant version of the infection you have.

Please keep in mind that all of the diseases listed on this page can get in through oral or anal sex as well as vaginal.

Most of them are also transmittable through touch if hands aren't washed well.

Bacteria and fungi breed wherever they can, and dark, moist areas filled with mucus membranes look like heaven to most microorganisms.

Some infections will produce similar symptoms in other areas as they do in the genital areas, but some will change symptoms because they're infecting a new area.

Always go to a doctor if an infection doesn't start getting better within a week, and go to an ER pronto if you start getting the symptoms of systemic infection. Fever, chills, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle aches and cramps to a severe and scary level are indications that you should get to your local emergency room.

There are many grahpic images throughout this page and website on male and female genitals that have been infected by an std of some sort.


The Std Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial vaginosis is an STD and is defined as the inflammation of the vagina and upper genital tract by Gardnerella vaginalis.

This std bacteria normally exists within the vagina but is held in check by the more common Lactobacillus family. Like yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis can crop up for many reasons, such as an imbalance within the body. As a bacterial infection, this std can be passed on to men who usually develop a urinary tract infection.

The symptoms of the bacterial vaginosis std in women are an abnormal vaginal discharge that may smell "fishy", along with intense itching, swelling and irritation.

Bacterial vaginosis is often mistaken for a yeast infection, which is why proper diagnosis is so important. Bacterial vaginosis is an std treated with oral metronidazole or oral clindamycin.

Untreated bacterial vaginosis can contribute to pelvic inflammatory disease, increase susceptibility to other sexually transmitted diseases, and contribute to complications during pregnancy and labor. This std is generally considered to be no more than a nuisance, but this nuisance can be easily cured so there's really no reason to wait.


The Std Gonorrhea

Std Defintion: Gonorrhea is caused by a bacteria called Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which is transmitted through bodily fluid exchange and sometimes by simple touch.

How the Std, Gonorrhea, is Caught

The methods of contagion from one person to another are very similar to a yeast infection for this std, so many of the same hygiene precautions apply. When I was a kid, I saw a case of infant oral gonorrhea come in to my mother's emergency room. The baby's father had accidentally given her this std because he didn't wash his hands well enough before feeding her.

Symptoms of this Gonorrhea Std

The symptoms of gonorrhea include pain or discomfort during urination, frequent urination, fever, and a yellow, foul smelling discharge from the urethra or vagina. Women can also experience lower abdominal or pelvic pain, tender vulvovaginal glands and eventually pelvic inflammatory disease. In addition, gonorrhea can cause no symptoms at all and still present with complications later while making you contagious the entire time.

Gonorrhea of female genitals: Vaginal

Gonorrhea in female genitals: Vaginal.

male Gonorrhea in penis / genitals

Above is a picture of Gonorrhea
in a male's genitals - penis.

Simultaneous std infection with chlamydia is fairly common, and simultaneous infection with the std, syphilis, is not unknown.

This particular bacterial std disease can cause inflammation of the urethra, cervix, fallopian tubes, rectum or pharnyx (throat) in women, and urethra, prostate, rectum and pharnyx in men.

This std has an oral version and a genital version; obviously the oral version is the one that causes throat inflammation. It can be easily transmitted between the mouth and the genitals if proper hygiene isn't practiced both ways. If the std gets into the blood, it can spread to the skin or the joints, causing massive complications.

What the Gonorrhea Std may do

If a mother has a gonorrhea infection during natural birth, this std bacteria can get into the conjunctival sac of the newborn baby and cause conjunctivitis.

If the std infection is in the rectum, the bacteria can also infect the liver and immediately surrounding area, causing some dangerous complications.

Diagnosing this Std

This std, Gonorrhea, must be diagnosed in a lab with the appropriate test, usually involving a swab of the infected area and a culture from that swab.

Preventing this Std

Male latex condoms, used properly, do help protect against this disease. Condoms in conjunction with appropriate hygiene, i.e. washing hands well before sex and no unprotected oral sex, will go further in preventing this std from being caught.

Newborns are regularly treated with either a drop of silver nitrate solution or a bit of antibiotic ointment to ensure that no infections from Mom's birth canal have the opportunity to grow.

The Std Treatment for Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is treated with a course of cephalosporin antibiotics. If you're allergic to cephalosporins, a course of quinolone anti-infectives such as fluoroquinolone may be substituted, but you'll probably need to be checked afterwards to ensure the eradication of the infection.

If pregnant and allergic to cephalosporins, the most common substitute is erythromycin but again, you should be rechecked at the end of the antibiotic therapy to ensure the complete eradication of the bacteria.

If a newborn catches gonorrhea from Mom in the eyes, the most common therapy is penicillin or ceftriaxone (a cephalosporin) in a sterile water solution.


The Std Chlamydia

Definition: Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis.

The family of Chlamydia viruses has three members that normally affect human beings, but only C. trachomatis produces genital infections.

C. pneumoniae affects the bronchial tract and is normally transmitted the same way colds are, and C. psittaci is most often found in birds, animals, and people who work closely with them such as pet store owners and food processing workers.

So, if you have a genital chlamydia std, it's C. trachomatis or a minor variant. The genital chlamydia std can be avoided with proper hygiene and use of latex condoms during sexual intercourse.

The symptoms of chlamyidal std include inflammation of the urethra, pain during urination, pneumonia, discharge from the urethra for men, discharge from the urethra and/or vagina for women, lower abdominal pain and the possibility of acute pelvic inflammatory disease.

Chlamydia on the female vaginal area

Photo of chlamydia std in the female genitals; Vaginal; when looked at the inside of the vagina.

Male genital Chlamydia  of the penis

Picture of chlamydia std in the male genitals; Penis. (The above four photos of chlamydia courtesy of SOA-AIDS, Amsterdam).

Chlamydia can cause swelling of the pubic lymph nodes

Chlamydia can also cause swelling of the lymph nodes in the pubic area, as the above picture / photo shows. Photo courtesy of Herbert L. Fred and Hendrik A. van Dijk

Chlamydia std can be transmitted to the eyes of newborns during natural birth, and is normally guarded against with a drop of silver nitrate solution or a bit of antibiotic ointment. These days, the antibiotic ointment is regarded as safer, but either one is better than newborn conjunctivitis due to a chlamydia std infection.

Chlamydia std is diagnosed in a laboratory with one of several different available tests.

It can be cured with a course of erythromycin, azithromycin or tetracycline. Tetracycline should not be given to pregnant women or kids under age eight.


The Chancroid STD

Chancroid is one of the more common sexually transmitted bacterial diseases.

Definition: This Std is caused by Haemophilus ducreyi.

The hallmark symptom of chancroid is one or more painful ulcers appearing on the genitalia.

It generally begins with multiple pustules that quickly break and form ulcers.

These ulcers have abrupt edges, a rough floor and yellow secretions. It's also sensitive as all get out.

Chancroid puss filled sac prior to bursting open.

Above: Picture of chancroid puss sac on penis.It can be easily confused with the bacterial infection streptococcus, which I have included a picture of below.

The ulcer usually heals rapidly and leaves a scar.

These ulcers can affect the penis, urethra, vulva, or anus.

The infection is not always stopped by use of a condom, but fortunately treatment is pretty easy.

Treatment of this std: A course of ceftriaxone and one of the macrolide antibiotics like erythromycin will usually eradicate the problem entirely.


The Std, Donovanosis

Donovanosis is a sexually transmitted disease more commonly known as granuloma inguinale.

Definition: This std is caused by a bacteria called Calymmatobacterium granulomatis, more commonly called a Donovan body. It would be really nice if they got all their names sorted out at some point, but that's beyond the scope of this website.

The symptoms of infection with this particular std bacteria is an ulcer or lesion appearing as a painless nodule in the genital area.

Donovanosis on male penis

Above is a photo picture of Donovanosis on male genitals: Penis.

Donovanosis on female vagina-genitals

Above is a photo picture of Donovanosis on female genitals: Vagina. Above three photos of Donovanosis courtesy of SOA - AIDS, Amsterdam.

It's treated with erythromycin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxanole, tetracyclines or oral ciprofloxacin.

A single intramuscular injection with ceftriaxone is also effective.


Enteritis and Proctocolitis Stds

Inflammation of the intestinal tract, colon and rectum can be caused by the sexually transmitted bacteria family of Campylobacter.

Of course, it's usually treated with antibiotic and is fairly common across the spectrum of humanity.

Being bacteria, they're transmitted through touch and bodily fluids.


STD Neonatal Sepsis and Postpartum Fever

Streptococcus Group B can be spread through sexual contact.

It's one of the leading causes of systemic sepsis in newborns and postpartum fever in new moms.

In women, the std infection symptoms with streptococcus is marked by urinary tract infection, wound infections and problems in and around birth.

The streptococcus std infection is usually treated with antibiotics, but due to abuse of antibiotics there are several medication-resistant strains already.

Avoidance is usually the best bet, but if you already have this std and are taking antibiotics, finish the entire course.

If it doesn't work, see your doctor immediately, you may already have one of the resistant varieties of this std.


Stds and Postpartum Fever and Meningitis

A sexually transmitted bacteria called Mycoplasma hominis can cause both postpartum fever in new moms and meningitis in anyone.

Postpartum fever's pretty easy to diagnose, it involves all the symptoms of this std infection, such as fever, right after birth.

Meningitis is the inflammation of the membranes of the spinal cord or brain and counts as a medical emergency.

Infectious meningitis is fatal in 10% to 40% of people who are treated under optimal conditions.

This std will cause permanent brain damage in about 10% of people who survive the initial infection.

The most common treatment for this std is a course of tetracycline, erythromycin, clarithromycin, azithromycin or any of the fluoroquinolones. These should eliminate the bacteria completely but can do nothing about permanent damage that's already occured.

This std bacteria isn't very common, but some people can carry it without symptoms while still being contagious.


The Std Shigellosis

Definition: Infection of the gastrointestinal tract with any of the Shigella family of bacteria.

The common symptoms are fever, bloody diarrhea and abdominal cramps.

This disease is transmitted through fecal contact. It can be gotten from infected skin, in contaminated food or water, or through anal sex. It's actually a kind of dysentery.

Shigellosis is treated with antibiotics along with a strict hygiene regimen to ensure std re-infection does not occur.


Trichomonal Vaginitis Std

This type of vaginitis (vaginal irritation) is caused by Trichomonas vaginalis.

It's transmitted through contact with sexual fluids or through touch, although it's usually only found inside the male urethra instead of on the outside of the penis. That means that, barring contact with the bacteria in a medical setting, sexual intercourse is the most common way to get it.

Symptoms of this std: This particular form of vaginitis causes itching, burning, redness and inflammation of the vulva along with a lot of vaginal discharge. The vaginal discharge may appear frothy, smell really bad, or both. Of course, infected women can give it to men, where it will usually appear as a urinary tract infection. Trichomonas infection can also be present without symptoms, so if one partner has it it's a good idea for both to get treated.

Trichomonal vaginitis

Looking ionto the vagina at 3x magnification, this is what Trichomonal vaginitis can look like.

Treatment of this Std: The most common medication given for infection with Trichomonas is a course of oral metronidazole. If the woman with the infection is pregnant and in her first trimester, clotrimazole suppositories are substituted as metronidazole can cause problems with a fetus in the first 12 weeks.


Urethritis Std

Last but not least, there is one more kind of bacteria that usually shows up with symptom as a urinary tract/genital infection that can be sexually transmitted.

It's called Ureaplasma urealyticum and it can affect both men and women.

Urethritis of the female vagina

Above is a picture showing a urithritis infection of the vagina, when a lense is placed over the vagina to keep it open.

Urthritis of the male penis

Above is a picture of urithritis of the penis. Above two photos of urethritis courtesy of SOA - AIDS, Amsterdam.

Again, it's usually treated with antibiotics.

Sexually transmitted urethritis has been implicated in newborns with low birth weight who show symptoms of unspecified infection.

However, under normal circumstances it's no big deal, though again, both partners should be treated even if only one has symptoms.


STD and STI Bacterial References

Taber's Encyclopedia

Amsel R, Totten PA, Spiegel CA, Chen KC, Eschenbach D, Holmes KK (1983). "Nonspecific vaginitis. Diagnostic criteria and microbial and epidemiologic associations". Am. J. Med. 74 (1): 14–22.

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