Trichomonas Vaginalis is the most prevalent non-viral sexually transmitted disease in the world. WHO estimates that there were 248 million cases in 2005. This is more than double the number for chlamydia infections or gonorrhea infections. It has also been associated with increased risk HIV transmission (up to 2-3 times increase risk of HIV) and pre-term births. Most infected persons (70%–85%) have minimal or no symptoms and untreated infections might last for months to years. Therefore, it is readily passed between sex partners sexual intercourse.
How do I know if I have Trichomonas vaginalis infection?
In most females, you do not have any symptoms. If you do have symptoms, you may have vaginal discharge that might be watery, smelly, or yellow-green with or without vulvar itchiness.
How do I test to know if I have been infected especially if most women do NOT have any symptoms?
In the past, Doctors used to conduct what is known as a “whiff test” for Trichomonas. This involved placing a few drops of potassium hydroxide on the vaginal discharge and a strong fishy odour would indicate a positive test. Fortunately, medical science has advanced from that.
Traditionally, tests for Trichomonas vaginalis are notoriously not good in detecting infection in females. Depending on which tests is done it may only pick up 30-60% of the infection in women. Also the test results will usually only be available after 3-5 working days.
At DTAP clinics, they are offering a test for Trichomonas that is accurate, fast and painless.
What is different about the test offered by Dr Tan and Partners clinics?
- Real-time PCR (detects for nucleic acid of the organism)
- Very sensitive (90-98%) – compared to other tests where the sensitivity can range from 30-60%
- Fast – next working day compared to 3-5 days
- Can use either endocervical swabs (recommended if have symptoms) or urine (if no symptoms)
As a result of faster results, we can give the necessary treatment faster as well. Treatment for Trichomonas is easy and only involves taking some tablets.
What do I have to do for the test?
For endocervcial swabs, the doctor will need to swab the inside of the vaginal much like how pap smear is performed. It is painless.
For urine sample, we recommend that you hold your urine for at least 2 hours from the last time you pass urine before coming in for the test.
Need a Female Doctor?
Having Women’s Health concerns? Please visit our partner clinics or contact them at their Clinics in Singapore. They are open on weekends too.