Trichomoniasis (confirmed exposure) Care Plan

By David Morley, MD
Medically reviewed
August 17, 2021

Facts you should consider before starting your treatment for suspected trichomonas

  • If you’ve been exposed to trichomonas, you could have also been exposed to other STDs, like Chlamydia. Gonorrhea, HIV, syphilis or Hepatitis, which require separate treatment – and if left untreated, can cause serious complications, including infertility and death.
  • The treatment you’re about to receive for trichomonas does not treat gonorrhea or other STDs. We can order testing for some STDs and help you find evaluation and treatment for other STDs. All you have to do is let us know.
  • People who receive treatment for a potential/suspected sexually transmitted infection don’t always actually have it. Taking medication if you do not in fact have an infection can be dangerous, because if you do contract an infection in the future, your body will have developed resistance to treatment.

Next steps…

  • Avoid all sexual activity for at least one week after treatment (and if you have symptoms, until your symptoms have resolved). 
  • Complete the entire course of the antibiotics you were prescribed. Taking a partial course can result in partial treatment of your infection! 
  • Contact your sexual partner(s) so they can be treated 
  • For women, it is crucial to get tested for trichomonas 2 weeks after treatment to make sure that you’ve gotten the right treatment.

See a doctor in person if…

  • You experience high fever, moderate to severe abdominal pain, or persistent vomiting.

Check-in with K Health if…

  • You decide you want testing for STDs
  • Your develop symptoms of STDs (as described above)
  • Your symptoms improve but do not completely resolve as this could be a sign of a partially treated infection. In this case your doctor may want to adjust your treatment or order further testing.

What is trichomoniasis?

Trichomoniasis is a very common sexually transmitted disease (STD), and in the United States, about 3.7 million people are infected with it. Many people are infected but are asymptomatic. Trichomoniasis is caused by a tiny parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis (TV). You can catch it through genital contact. Infection is more common in women than in men. In women, the lower genital tract (vulva, vagina, cervix, and urethra) are the parts most affected. In men, it’s the inside of the penis (urethra).

Read more about trichomoniasis

Why testing is key

If you’re sexually active, you should consider STD testing an important part of your overall health plan. STDs are common and contagious, but sometimes asymptomatic— meaning you can contract an STD and pass it to others without even realizing it. If left untreated, STDs can cause long-term health consequences for both patients and their sexual partners, which is why early detection and treatment are critical.

How and where to get tested for STDs

Where to get tested for HIV

Where to find free in-person treatment for STDs

STD prevention & safe sex

There are many definitions of safe sex. Some define it as sexual contact in which bodily fluids like blood, semen, or vaginal fluids are not exchanged. Others define it as sexual contact between two monogamous partners who have both been tested for STDs and found negative. A more general understanding of safe sex is sex using a barrier method of protection against STDs and unplanned pregnancy. 

Some sexual health professionals prefer the term “safer sex,” to “safe sex,” as all sex carries some risk – whether it’s of infection or pregnancy – even if precautions are taken. While there is no guaranteed way to avoid STDs without abstaining from sexual contact, here are some guidelines for safer sex that offer maximum protection against STDs and unwanted pregnancy. 

Learn more about STD prevention

K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.

David Morley, MD

Dr. Morley specializes in emergency medicine and received his medical degree from the Sackler School of Medicine in New York City. He completed his residency at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.