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  • Trichomoniasis


Causative organism Trichomonas vaginalis
Incubation period 5-28 days
How far back to trace There is insufficient data to provide a definitive period, but current partner/s notification and concurrent treatment is recommended to prevent reinfection.
Usual testing method Nucleic acid amplification tests (NAATs) are the most sensitive tests available to detect Trichomonas vaginalis. Wet preparation microscopy and culture are less sensitive
Common symptoms 10–50% of women and most men are asymptomatic. Symptoms in women: vaginal itch, vaginal discharge typically profuse and frothy
Symptoms in men: urethral discharge and dysuria (both uncommon)
Likelihood of transmission per act of unprotected intercourse Unknown, likely moderate to high Perinatal transmission 5%
Likelihood of long-term sexual partner being infected Up to 70% of male partners of infected women and 60-100% of female partners of infected men
Protective effect of condoms High
Transmission by oral sex Extragenital injections (oral, anal) are uncommon
Duration of potential infectivity Trichomonas vaginalis in women is thought to be longstanding, up to 3-5 years, whereas infection among men may spontaneously resolve lasting up to 4 months.
Important sequelae Preterm delivery and low birth weight; Increased transmission of HIV
Direct benefit of detection and treatment of contacts Cure
Usual management of contacts Counselling, clinical examination and testing. Treat male and female sexual partners presumptively
Contact tracing priority Medium.
Notification Not notifiable in Australia or New Zealand