Does having a Sexually Transmitted Disease affect your pregnancy options?
Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are infections spread by sexual contact with skin, genitals, mouth, rectum, or body fluids. Although some STDs can be treated, others cannot. People with an STD may not know they have it.1
Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD's) pose a serious risk to a woman's future reproductive and overall health, especially if left untreated. According to the Centers for Disease Control, in the United States, 1 out of 4 women between the ages of 14 and 19 is infected with at least one STD. Women who have an untreated STD (like chlamydia or gonorrhea) are up to 25% more likely to develop Pelvic Inflamatory Disease (PID) following an abortion procedure.
There is no contraceptive method that is highly effective in simultaneously preventing pregnancy and STDs.2 Condoms provide some protection, but 21-40% of the time condom use fails to protect against STDs.3
More than 1 in 3 female teens who have had sex have an STD.4 As your number of partners and sexual encounters increases, your risk of contracting an STD increases dramatically.
What is Your STD Risk Ratio?4
Condoms cannot protect you against certain types of diseases, such as herpes, syphilis and HPV. The use of hormonal contraceptives increases your risk for contracting certain STD's, such as chlamydia. Men and women who have any other sexually transmitted infection (STI) are at least two to five times more likely to get HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
Most STD's go undiagnosed because symptoms are not recognized or are very mild. An infected individual can share an STD with their partner before ever realizing they have one. Because they are often asymptomatic, it's important to be tested. CompassCare provides STD testing and treatment. Schedule a free consultation.
Click here to:
Sexually Transmitted Diseases Prevalent Among Women in the United States
Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
can include abnormal vaginal discharge with an unpleasant odor, pain, itching or burning
increases a woman's susceptibility to other STD's
can develop into PID, resulting in damage to the fallopian tubes and infertility
can include lower abdominal pain or burning sensation when urinating; in women, abnormal vaginal discharge, painful intercourse; in men, discharge from the penis, testicular pain
increases a woman's susceptibility to HIV
can develop into a "silent" infection, impacting a woman's future ability to have children
can include burning sensation when urinating, frequent urination, painful intercourse, thick, cloudy or bloody vaginal discharge or penile discharge
increases a woman's susceptibility to HIV; can be transmitted to infants during birth, causing blindness, joint and blood infections
can develop into PID and infertility in both men and women
can include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, clay-colored bowel movements, joint pain, jaundice
can cause jaundice; is easily spread through fecal-oral contact
is the leading cause of liver cancer
can include small red bumps or tiny white blisters that become ulcers and can be found on the genitals, buttocks, anus or thighs, sometimes flu-like symptoms
causes recurrent, painful, sores and can be transmitted to infants during birth
can increase a woman's chances of contracting HIV
can include fatigue, fever, headache, sore throat, rash, swollen lymph glands, diarrhea, dry cough, sudden weight loss
can be symptomless for 10 years or more, but still transmitted to sexual partners or infant during childbirth
can progress into AIDS and death
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
can include genital warts, sometimes in the mouth or throat, genital itching or discomfort, bleeding with intercourse
can be spread through contact with the infected area regardless of whether symptoms are present
causesgenital warts, cervical and vaginal cancers, and rarely, penile and anal cancers
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
can include lower abdominal pain, fever, unusual vaginal discharge, odor, painful intercourse, painful urination, irregular menstrual bleeding
often goes undiagnosed and can lead to serious infection
can cause permanent damage to female reproductive organs; repeated episodes can lead to infertility (over 100,000 women per year), ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain. over 150 women die from complications of PID annually
can include one or more painless, open sores called chancres
can be spread when sores are present anywhere on the body, including the anus and mouth; sores can last 3-6 weeks and leave scars
can damage internal organs, resulting in paralysis, blindness, dementia and even death
can include discomfort during intercourse and urination; in men, irritation inside the penis, mild discharge, or slight burning after urination or ejaculation; in women, greenish yellow, possibly frothy discharge, strong odor, irritation and itching
can increase the probability of acquiring HIV
can result in premature or low birth-weight babies
Information compiled from:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website (2011): http://www.cdc.gov/STD/
Mayo Clinic (2011): http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/std-symptoms/ID00053
1 The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (2011). “How to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.” FAQ009.
2 Cates W, Stone KM (1992). “Family planning, sexually transmitted diseases and contraceptive choice: A literature update—Part I.” Fam Plann Perspect, 24(2): 75-84.
3 Sanghvi H (1996). “Contraception and STDs.” In: JHPIEGO. “Issues in Management of STDs in Family Planning Settings.” STDs Workshop Proceedings; Apr 19-21, 1995; Baltimore, MD.
4 Forhan SE, Gottlieb SL, Sternberg MR, Xu F, Datta SD, McQuillan GM, et al. (2009). “Prevalence of sexually transmitted infections among female adolescents aged 14 to 19 in the United States.” Pediatrics, 124(6): 1505-12.