Trichomoniasis (TV) in gay and bisexual men
What is trichomoniasis or TV?
- It is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by a tiny parasite, Trichomonas vaginalis.
- In men it causes an infection in the urethra (water passage) and can lead to pain on passing or urine or a discharge from the tip of the penis
- Most men will have no symptoms but can still pass the infection onto their female sexual partner.
- It is easily treated with antibiotics.
- If you have TV we recommend that you should have a full STI screen including a HIV test.
How common is TV?
- It is the third most common treatable STI in the UK.
- It occurs more commonly in Africans and Afro-carribeans.
- It is more commonly diagnosed in women and their male partners
- It is rarely seen in gay men.
How do you catch TV?
- TV is a sexually transmitted infection.
- It is passed on through vaginal sex.
- You cannot catch it from toilet seats, swimming pools or hot tubs.
- Most men will be first alerted to a possible infection when their female partner is diagnosed with TV.
What would I notice if I had TV?
- Most men will not notice anything.
- Some men may notice one or more of the following:
- burning or pain when passing urine
- Irritation inside the urethra (water passage)
- passing urine more frequently
- discharge from the tip of the penis
How do I get tested for TV?
- It is best to attend a specialised sexual health clinic where a swab will be taken and immediately examined under a microscope.
- In men the test for TV is not very accurate so all male partners of women diagnosed with TV are routinely treated to be safe.
How is TV treated?
- TV can be treated with a short course of antibiotics:
- Metronidazole 2g single dose
- Metronidazole 400mg twice daily for 5 days
- Avoid alcohol whilst taking metronidazole and for 48hours following completion.
- All treatments from the Wolverton Centre are free and are given to you directly in the clinic.
What about my partner?
- TV is a sexually transmitted infection so it is important that all female sexual partners are tested and treated before resuming sex again.
What problems can untreated TV lead to?
- TV can increase the risk of catching HIV.
Will TV come back again after treatment?
- If TV is treated correctly it will only recur if you are reinfected.