Are you concerned that you may have an STD? If so, then you shouldn’t ignore this problem. If testing reveals that you are positive for a sexually transmitted disease, then your gynecologist will advise you to start STD treatment right away. Continue reading to learn about the health risks associated with some common STDs when they aren’t treated.
Caused by the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis , chlamydia is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in the United States. Often, this disease does not cause symptoms. However, when left untreated, chlamydia can lead to several complications, such as chronic pelvic pain, pelvic inflammatory disease, damage to the fallopian tubes and uterus, infertility, and ectopic pregnancies.
A sexually transmitted disease that is caused by the Neisseria gonorrhoeae bacteria, gonorrhea is quite common and establishes itself in the body by infecting mucous membranes. When gonorrhea is not treated, this can increase the individual’s risk of getting or transmitting HIV. Also, this disease can cause a life-threatening infection if it spreads to the blood, some symptoms of which include arthritis, dermatitis, and tenosynovitis.
Trichomoniasis is caused by a parasite and is a very common STD that often has no symptoms. When this STD isn’t treated, infected pregnant women may experience complications such as having a baby with low birth weight, premature delivery, and transmission of the disease to the baby during delivery.
Syphilis is another example of a common STD that can pose serious health risks if it is left untreated. This bacterial infection is caused by Treponema pallidum and is usually spread through sexual contact. The infection commonly starts as a painless sore around the mouth, genitals, or rectum. When diagnosed early, syphilis can be cured. Without treatment, however, syphilis can be life-threatening and affect the brain and heart. Research has linked this type of infection with inflammation of the aorta, arterial aneurysms, and heart valve damage.