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  • Michael Frey, MD

Ureaplasma Infection

You may not have heard of Ureaplasma. This lesser-known sexually transmitted infection (STI) can cause vaginal discharge, urinary symptoms, and even long-term health issues.

How Do You Get Ureaplasma?

Ureaplasma can be spread by vaginal, penile, oral or anal sexual contact and intercourse. However, Ureaplasma can also be found in normal, healthy genital tracts. If a colony of Ureaplasma overgrows, it can cause irritation, without there needing to have been any risky behavior.

Symptoms of Ureaplasma

Ureaplasma Can Increase The Chance Of Infertility

Ureaplasma infection can impact your ability to conceive. In men, Ureaplasma can affect the number of sperm and the sperm’s ability to move.

Having Ureaplasma Can Increase Risk Of Getting Other STDs

If a Ureaplasma infection is left untreated, there may be an increased risk of contracting other STIs/STDs, including HIV.

Ureaplasma Can Be Treated With Antibiotics

Some Ureaplasma infections will clear up on their own. However, Ureaplasma can also be treated with antibiotics.

If antibiotics are taken, you should abstain from sexual intercourse until your treatment is finished and ensure that your sexual partners are also treated to avoid re-infecting each other.

You Can Test For Ureaplasma 28 days After Infection

You should wait four weeks after exposure before testing for Ureaplasma. This ensures that the infection can be accurately detected.

Testing For Ureaplasma Requires a Urine Sample Or Vaginal Swab

To test for Ureaplasma, all you need to provide is a urine sample. In women, bacterial infections, such as Ureaplasma, can also be detected with a swab test.

Do partners need to be treated for Ureaplasma infection?

Although there are no guidelines for partner treatment, it is reasonable to screen all sexual partners if you are positive. If screening of sexual partners is not possible, it is reasonable to empirically treat given the evidence of sexual transmission of this organism.


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