What to do if you have been diagnosed with an STD?
- Immediately contact your doctor/venereologist/gynecologist
- Contact your partner(s) and let them know that they also need to get tested and treated
- Abstinence from sex until the infection is either cured or until your doctor gives approval
- In case of bacterial infection, you should abstain from sex until the medications have cured you and your partner.
- In case of a viral infection, you should abstain from sex as long as you or your partner are on the antiviral medications.
What things one should know during the treatment of an STD?
Following are the things you should know while seeking help from your doctor:
- If you are diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease (STD), do not try to self-medicate. These diseases are contagious and serious, so you must see a doctor.
- If the infection is bacterial, you can be cured with antibiotics if they are started early enough.
- Your doctor may prescribe you antivirals to manage your symptoms, but a small amount of virus may continue to exist in your system. Hepatitis B vaccination may help you to protect from contracting Hepatitis B; however, it cannot treat it.
- If you have been given antibiotics for your STD infection by your doctor, you should take the entire prescribed drug course even if the symptoms go away.
- You should not take other subsequent medications without asking your doctor to avoid undesirable medicine interactions.
What are the specific treatments for curable STDs?
The treatments, complications, and outcomes for viral STIs depend on the particular virus:
- Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics once you are tested positive for gonorrhea or even if you have no symptoms but are exposed to them.
- Your partner will also have to be treated even if they have no symptoms.
- Certain types of gonorrhea may not respond to some antibiotics and then you may need to take more than one drug to fight against gonorrhea.
- You must make sure that your partner also seeks treatment.
- You should get retested after three months to make sure the infection has been cleared, even if your partner has been treated.
- Failure to treat gonorrhea infection may cause permanent damage to your sex organs and the ability to get pregnant.
- Your doctor may prescribe penicillin if you get Chancroid.
- Early treatment is essential to prevent the bacteria from spreading and causing further damage to other organs.
- Genital warts (Human papillomavirus [HPV]):
- Most genital warts will disappear without treatment, so your doctor may choose to do nothing. However, you will still carry the virus that causes warts and can still transmit it to your partners.
- If you do choose to treat genital warts, you have several options, such as freezing with nitrogen, cryotherapy, acid therapy, and surgical removal.
- You can still transmit the infection to others even if you clear the infection.
- Infection by this organism is treated with the antifungal drug, and 90% of the time it gets cured.
- If you're pregnant, you may be given the drug in your second or third trimester.
- Your partner should also get treated.
- You get retested after three months to be certain that the infection has cleared. Do this even if your partner has been treated.
What are the specific treatments for some incurable STDs?
- The treatment focuses on keeping HIV levels in check.
- Your doctor may prescribe you antiretroviral drugs as a standard therapy if you are diagnosed with HIV infection.
- Usually, you will be given several drug cocktails.
- When to begin HIV treatment is still controversial. Some doctors may start it early for better management of HIV infection, whereas others wait because of unpleasant side effects and drug resistance.
- You must talk to your doctor about your opinion about the beginning of antiretroviral therapy.
- The goal of hepatitis B treatment is to stop liver damage by preventing the virus from spreading.
- Your doctor may prescribe antivirals such as adefovir, entecavir, interferon-alpha, and lamivudine.
- Each has benefits and side effects that you should discuss with your doctor.
- If you develop significant liver damage from hepatitis B, a liver transplant may be necessary.
- Once you get infected with herpes simplex virus, the virus remains in your body for life.
- After the first outbreak, herpes may flare up several times per year, but these episodes may decrease over time.
- Antiviral medications (e.g., Famvir) can help reduce the length and severity of both the initial and subsequent herpes outbreaks.
- If you have outbreaks often, your doctor may give you daily doses of suppressive therapy to prevent you from getting a herpes outbreak.
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Guidelines for the management of sexually transmitted infection https://www.who.int/hiv/topics/vct/sw_toolkit/guidelines_management_sti.pdf?ua=1