What are and how they are transmitted?

Did you know that you can have an STI even though you don’t have any symptoms?

It is important to detect them and treat them promptly.

What are they?

STIs (sexually transmitted infections) are an extensive group of infections that, as their name indicates, are transmitted from person to person during sexual intercourse.

They are caused by different types of microbes such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa. They mainly affect the genital organs although they can also localise in other parts of the body such as the mouth and the anus.

Why is it important to detect and treat them?

There are STIs that even invade the bloodstream and lymphatic system. They can affect different vital organs and have serious consequences if they are not treated, as well as significantly increase the risk of being infected by HIV.

How are they transmitted?

They are mainly transmitted during sexual intercourse without a condom, orally, anally and vaginally. Some STIs are only transmitted when there is an exchange of body fluids such as semen, urethral secretions or blood from an infected person (HIV, Hepatitis B and C). Others on the other hand are simply transmitted through direct contact with areas of the skin or mucosal tissue affected by the infections (syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, genital herpes and genital warts).