Why does trichomoniasis receive so little attention compared to other STDs?

Alynn B. Alexander, MD
OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology)
Trichiomoniasis receives little attention compared to other STDs probably because it’s not associated with any significant consequence of infection. Gonorrhea and chlamydia are often highlighted because we see it in a young population, and if left untreated can lead to significant pelvic inflammatory disease, which can result in infertility. Trichomoniasis is a parasite; symptoms include vaginal discharge with odor, sometimes discomfort during sex or urination, genital itching and occasionally lower abdomen pain. But it’s easily treated with a one-time dose of antibiotics. It can be a nuisance and uncomfortable but it’s relatively easy to treat. 
Because trichomoniasis is very common and causes significant risks to women's health, you would expect to see more interest in its prevention. There are several reasons why this sexually transmitted disease (STD) has received so little attention.

First, its symptoms -- primarily discharge and irritation of the vagina and urethra -- are mild and have been seen as troubling but less serious than the side effects of other STDs.

Second, the most common treatments -- metronidazole and tinidazole -- are highly effective in most women, though some difficulties can arise, such as drug allergies, drug intolerance or the parasite Trichomonas becoming resistant to this class of drugs. No other class of drugs is very effective for treatment.

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