Telling signs and symptoms

Afr Women Health. 1994 Jul-Sep;2(3):31-7.


PIP: Each year 250 million new cases of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) have the potential to cause pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, blindness, and death. Sometimes the onset of these STDs is symptomless, but the following conditions indicate the presence of an STD: genital discharge, sores, wounds, or blisters; swollen glands in the groin; cauliflower-like growths on the genitals; skin rash; lower abdominal pain in females; painful swelling in the testicles; alopecia; discharge from the eyes; and pain during intercourse. The 5 most common STDs which can be cured with antibiotics are chancroid, chlamydial infection, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis. By the end of 1994 in Uganda, 390 primary health units will be available for STD treatment, and most health workers will be trained in STD patient management. Since patients will receive the minimum amount of treatment needed to cure the STD, they will be well advised to use the drugs provided. Notification of all recent sex partners is also essential, and sex partners should be evaluated even if they are asymptomatic. Patients are advised to engage in safe sex behavior, including remaining faithful to a monogamous relationship and using condoms, and to seek medical advice if they develop STD symptoms or are exposed to STD. The AIDS virus is also transmitted through sexual intercourse as well as through blood transfusions, from mother to child, and through the use of contaminated needles. HIV infection progresses from a stage where it cannot be detected to an asymptomatic stage to a symptomatic stage. Chronic diarrhea, fever, and weight loss are the major symptoms. There is no treatment for HIV infection, but zidovudine (AZT) can delay progress of the disease. The most important treatment available is counseling and understanding. The Uganda AIDS Commission works to control the disease through education, treatment of STDs, provision of safe blood for transfusion, monitoring, counseling patients, and promoting research. The primary objective in the care of AIDS patients is to improve the quality of their life as much as possible.

MeSH terms

  • Africa
  • Africa South of the Sahara
  • Africa, Eastern
  • Behavior
  • Chancroid*
  • Chlamydia*
  • Developing Countries
  • Disease
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic*
  • Gonorrhea*
  • HIV Infections*
  • Infections
  • Sexual Behavior*
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases*
  • Signs and Symptoms*
  • Syphilis*
  • Therapeutics*
  • Uganda
  • Virus Diseases