Is there any research being done on sexually transmitted infection (STI)?

Yes. Research on STIs is a public health priority. Research is focused on prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.

With prevention, researchers are looking at strategies such as vaccines and topical microbicides. One large study is testing a herpes vaccine for women. Topical microbicides could play a big role in protecting women from getting STIs. But so far, they have been difficult to design. They are gels or creams that would be put into the vagina to kill or stop the STI before it could infect someone. Researchers are also looking at the reasons some people are at higher risk of STIs, and ways to lower these risks.

Early and fast diagnosis of STIs means treatment can start right away. Early treatment helps to limit the effects of an STI and keep it from spreading to others. Researchers are looking at quick, easy, and better ways to test for STIs, including vaginal swabs women can use to collect a sample for testing. They also are studying the reasons why many STIs have no symptoms, which can delay diagnosis.

Research also is underway to develop new ways to treat STIs. For instance, more and more people are becoming infected with types of gonorrhea that do not respond well to drugs. So scientists are working to develop new antibiotics to treat these drug-resistant types. An example of treatment research success is the life-prolonging effects of new drugs used to treat HIV.

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

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