The threat of sexually transmitted infections

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) is a national health problem in Ukraine. About 400,000 new cases of syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes, genitourinary mycoplasmosis, genital candidiasis and trichomoniasis are registered annually in Ukraine. STIs, whose pathogens are more than 30 different bacteria, viruses and parasites, are distributed mainly due to sexual contacts (vaginal, anal, oral sex).

Microorganisms that cause STIs can also spread due to transfusion of blood products and tissue transplants. Many STIs, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis B, HIV, HPV, HSV-2 and syphilis, can also be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy and childbirth. A person may have STIs without obvious symptoms of the disease. Common symptoms of sexually transmitted diseases include vaginal discharge, urinary excretion in men, genital ulcers and abdominal pain.

With the highest incidence, 8 of the more than 30 known pathogens transmitted during sexual intercourse are associated. Today, 4 of these 8 infections are being treated, namely, syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia and trichomoniasis. The rest - hepatitis B, herpes, HIV and HPV - are viral and incurable infections, but due to treatment their effects can be reduced.

According to the results of numerous studies, the presence of STI significantly increases the risk of HIV transmission and infection by sexually transmitted infections. In particular, HIV transmission is facilitated by syphilis, genital herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, trichomoniasis, candidiasis, mycoplasmosis, and other sexually transmitted infections. Erosion and ulcers, inflammation, tissue damage caused by STIs, weaken the factors protecting the body from HIV infection.

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Email: aids-institute@aids-institute.org

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