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What is a sexually transmitted infection (STI)?

Patricia Geraghty, NP
Women's Health
A sexually transmitted infection is spread from person to person by close contact of the genitals to genitals or sometimes genitals to mouth. These are also called sexually transmitted diseases. They include the specific infections of chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphillus, genital herpes, pediculosis or lice, trichomoniasis, genital warts, lymphogranuloma venereum and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Angela Lowery
Family Medicine
A sexually transmitted infection is an infection that is primarily spread through person to person contact. There are over 30 different transmittable bacteria, parasites and viruses. The most common STIs are gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, trichomoniasis, chancroid, genital warts, HIV and Hepatitis B.

It is an infection passed from person to person through intimate sexual contact. STIs are also called sexually transmitted diseases, or STIs.

This information is based on source information from the National Women's Health Information Center.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.