Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma genitalium are bacterial infections that are not classified as sexually transmitted infections (STIs), although they are contracted in the same way as STIs. These bacteria are part of the normal flora of the genital tract but can cause infections when their growth becomes uncontrolled.
Misdiagnosis and Complications
These infections are often misdiagnosed due to the symptoms, or sometimes lack of them. This can lead to complications such as problems with fertility, meningitis, pneumonia, premature or stillbirth and chorioamnionitis, an infection of the membranes surrounding the fetus. If left untreated, these infections can spread around the body, causing damage to the muscles, nerves,and joints.
Symptoms Similar to Cystitis
The symptoms of Ureaplasma and Mycoplasma genitalium infections are very similar to cystitis and other urinary tract infections (UTIs). Common symptoms include redness and inflammation, unusual discharge, pain or burning while urinating and/or frequent urination. These symptoms can be found in both men and women suffering from Ureaplasma.
Importance of Regular Checkups
It is essential to get regular checkups as not every case shows these symptoms. Asymptomatic infections can still lead to complications and can be passed on to sexual partners. Regular screenings for STIs can help identify these infections early and prevent complications.
Highly Contagious Infections
Approximately 70% of sexually active men and women contract Ureaplasma urealyticum in their lifetime, through contact with saliva, blood, air, and needles. Since Ureaplasma is highly contagious and difficult to diagnose, prevention is the safest way to avoid getting into this perilous situation.
Prevention Measures for Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma genitalium
The safest way to protect yourself or your sexual partner is to..
- Use a condom
- Avoid sharing sex toys
- Minimise your sexual encounters
- STI screening regularly
Treatment Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma genitalium
Treating Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma genitalium infections usually involves a course of antibiotics. It is crucial to complete the entire course of antibiotics, even if the symptoms disappear before the treatment is finished. It is also essential to inform all recent sexual partners about the infection so they can get tested and treated if necessary.
Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma genitalium are common infections if left untreated can cause severe complications. It is essential to get regular checkups, especially if you are sexually active, to identify and treat these infections early. Prevention measures such as using condoms and minimizing sexual encounters can also help reduce the risk of infection. If you suspect that you may have contracted either of these infections, contact us for tests and further advice.