Sexual Transmitted Diseases Essay, Research Paper
Sexual transmitted diseases (STD) are one of the major causes of death in the United States, frequently in teenagers. Some of these sexual transmitted diseases do not have a cure and many others, if not treated properly, can lead to very serious complications as cancer. Quantities of the most common types of STD’s are viral, bacterial, and parasitic animals. A virus in order to survive needs a living cell within which to replicate. Some viruses can survive outside the host cell but they cannot grow or reproduce. Viruses have genes made of DNA or RNA that allow them to make copies of themselves. The virus uses the cell’s machinery and some of the cell’s enzymes to continue reproducing until the cell is destroyed and other cells become infected. HIV, Genital Warts, Herpes, Genital Herpes, and Hepatitis type A, C, E, and B are examples of viral STD’s. A bacterium is a prokaryotic organism. Bacteria are able to reproduce and grow without a host cell. Unlike viruses antibiotics destroy bacteria. Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, and Vaginitis are examples of bacterial STD’s. Parasitic animals is a common STD that affect many Americans each year. Vaginitis (Trichomoniasis), Lice, Scabies are examples of parasitic animals STD’s. Genital Warts are caused by certain types of HPV (Human papillomavirus). HPV is one of the most common causes of sexually transmitted diseases in this country. There are over one million new cases per year in the United States. Genital Warts are spread by sexual contact with an infected partner. This disease it is very contagious and usually within three months of sexual contact with an infected person, the individual will develop it. Not often people are born with the infection and sometimes people become infected and the warts will not develop for many years. Using condoms during sexual intercourse may provide some protection against HPV. Genital Warts are often asymptomatic meaning that often there are no symptoms. On the other hand they can cause warts in the genital areas in women and men. “In women, genital warts can occur on the vulva perianal area, vagina, and cervix. In men, genital warts can appear on the tip or shaft of the penis, urethra, scrotum, and perianal area.” (Aldara) Warts can also develop in the mouth of a person who has had oral sex with an infected individual. The warts often appear in groups and they can be so small that doctors need a magnifying glass or microscope to see them. The infection may produce itching, burning, and pain during sex. There is no cure for Genital Warts. The visible genital warts are frequently removed by surgery, laser, freezing, and burning. “Factors that might influence selection of treatment include size, location, and number of warts, changes in the warts, patient preference, cost of treatment, convenience, adverse effects, and provider experience.” (3M pharmaceuticals) Even though treatment can eliminate warts, it does not destroy the virus. There is a connection between HPV and the development of several types of cancer, such as the cervical cancer, vulvar cancer, anal cancer, and cancer of the penis. This is the reason why symptoms should not be ignored and if a person believes that he/she has an HPV infection he/she should look for professional help immediately. Chlamydia is a sexual transmitted infection caused by a bacterium, Chlamydia trachomatis. It is estimated that Chlamydia is the most common sexual transmitted disease in the United States since there are three to four million new cases each year. It is particularly common among teens and young adults. Chlamydia is often transmitted through sexual contact and it is possible for pregnant women to pass the bacteria to their newborn during birth. Using condoms or diaphragms during sexual intercourse may help reduce the transmission of chlamydial bacteria. Chlamydia is often called the Silent Epidemic in view of the fact that up to 70 percent of women and 30 percent of men who are infected show no symptoms. Alternatively when symptoms take place, usually after one to three weeks of having sexual contact with an infected person, women suffer increased vaginal discharge, painful urination, unusual vaginal bleeding, bleeding after sex, painful intercourse, and lower abdominal pain. Men may perhaps go through burning sensation while urinating, mild, sticky, milky or mucus-like discharge from penis, testicular pain, and irritation around opening of the penis. Symptoms may seem to ebb and flow. “Chlamydia is the easiest sexual transmitted disease to treat. Doctors may prescribe a single dose of an antibiotic (azithromycin), or other antibiotics which eliminate the disease within a week.” (The Silent Epidemic) Tetracycline or doxycycline are some of the antibiotics recommended for chlamydial infection. Complications, such as pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, and inflammation of the testicles, can result if the infection is not treated properly. This takes place very regularly for the reason that Chlamydia is very asymptomatic. Another common sexual transmitted disease is Trichomoniasis, which is frequently called “trich”. Trichomoniasis is caused by a parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. Trichomoniasis is mainly an infection of the urethra in men and the vagina in women. This sexual transmitted disease affects two to three million Americans every year. Having sexual contact, transferring vaginal discharge with hands and mouth, and sharing sex toys with an infected partner transmits trichomoniasis. Condoms and diaphragms may be helpful in preventing the spread of Trichomoniasis. Like many other sexual transmitted disease Trichomoniasis is asymptomatic. “In men 90% may have no signs.” (Trichomoniasis) But when symptoms do occur, within four to twenty days of exposure, men normally suffer a thin, whitish discharge from the penis and painful or difficult urination. While women experience heavy, yellow-green or gray vaginal discharge, itching, irritation, burning during urination, discomfort during intercourse, and vaginal odor. Even though men usually show no symptoms it is healthier to treat both partners to eliminate the parasite. “Treatment is with antibiotic tablets, either tinidazole (Fasigyn) which is taken as a single large dose, or metronidazole, which is taken over five days.” (Trichomoniasis: Essential Facts) People receiving treatment should not drink alcohol since mixing alcohol with the medicines can cause severe nausea and vomiting. Sexual transmitted diseases are responsible for the death of millions of Americans and many other people around the world each year. The most dangerous one is the viral STD since there is no cure for this one. Other STD’s such as the bacteria and parasite animals can be treated with good results but sometimes they can lead to serious complications as many types of cancer, infertility, and birth defects. The most affected people by STD’s in the United States are teenagers because of the lack of knowledge about this field and their sexual life. The best way to avoid contracting an STD infection is abstinence. Moreover, having only one sexual partner and using condoms or diaphragms during sexual intercourse can reduce the risks.