Sexually Transmitted Diseases in Men
Sexually transmitted diseases are very prevalent. Occasionally they can be asymptomatic and the body can get rid of them spontaneously. Often sexually transmitted diseases present with significant symptoms and discomfort.
Safe sexual practices are essential to prevention of sexually transmitted diseases. When one is diagnosed with sexually transmitted disease such as HPV, gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis or HIV, it is essential that they inform their present and past sexual partners about the diagnosis. It is important to have both present and past sexual partners tested and treated as well.
Dr. Alex Shteynshlyuger is a fellowship trained board certified urologist with expertise in evaluation and treatment of men’s sexual health issues using modern effective and proven treatment methods. If you or someone you know has a concern about sexually transmitted disease or warts (STDs), make an appointment to take advantage of Dr. Shteynshlyuger’s expert advice.
Genital warts are caused by HPV (human papillomavirus) viruses 6 and 11. Genital warts which appear like mini-christmas trees can appear on the penis, scrotum, thighs and lower abdomen. These are transmitted by direct skin-to-skin contact. It is important to remember that condoms may not protect you from HPV. Some genital warts may resolve with time spontaneously. HPV vaccines are available and are indicated for men and women.
Herpes infection usually becomes symptomatic within 1-3 weeks after exposure. Symptoms of herpes infection include painful ulcers on the genitals and enlarged lymph nodes. Typically herpes appears as a number of small vesicles.
Treatment options for herpes include anti-viral medications. For men and women with frequent recurrences, suppressive therapy may be beneficial. Episodic therapy initiated by the patient within a day of the onset of symptoms may also be beneficial.
Gonorrhea is a common sexually-transmitted infection that can cause multiple symptoms in men including epididymitis or cystitis and urethritis. Gonorrhea usually presents with urethral discharge or testicular pain and swelling can also be present. Some men can be asymptomatic. Diagnosis with any sexually-transmitted diseases should prompt testing for gonorrhea. Effective treatment is available and prompt diagnosis is essential.
Chlamydia infection is one of the most common sexually-transmitted diseases in the United States. Symptoms typically appear within one to 2 weeks after exposure however most men and women are asymptomatic. Typically when men develop symptoms, they may present with urethritis, epididymitis or prostatitis. Clear or white urethral discharge can be present as well. Prompt diagnosis and treatment are essential.
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease. Symptoms of syphilis can include an ulcer on the glans penis. The ulcer is usually painless; it may be associated with inguinal lymph nodes which are usually painless as well. Untreated syphilis can result in what we call a secondary or tertiary syphilis which can present with a variety of non-genital symptoms. Syphilis is a dangerous condition and requires treatment.
HIV / AIDS
HIV/AIDS is a sexually transmitted disease that has become very prevalent. Around 0.5% of adult US population is thought to be infected. A diagnosis with any sexually transmitted disease should prompt testing for HIV. Prompt diagnosis is essential to successful management of HIV. AIDS is a clinical diagnosis of advanced HIV infection.
Chanchroid is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection characterized by tender papules as well as tender inguinal adenopathy. Treatment with antibiotics such as ceftriaxone is very effective. Prompt diagnosis is essential.