Trichomonads are parasites that are often transmitted through sexual contact. Trichomoniasis can be cured with antiparasitic drugs.

Pathogen and transmission

Trichomonads are parasites that are often transmitted through sexual contact. Other transmission routes are rare but may include the parasites reaching the vagina via the bladder or rectum or being passed on indirectly, facilitated by a moist and alkaline environment. This can very rarely occur, for example, through the shared use of damp fabrics (towels) or through unchlorinated bathwater. Transmission from the mother to the newborn child is also possible.

Clinical picture

The infection often proceeds asymptomatically. Fifty percent of women experience no symptoms, and in men the infection generally progresses without any signs of disease. If symptoms do appear, they manifest as itching, a burning sensation during urination and a sweetly malodorous discharge. An untreated infection can lead to sterility in both men and women.

Frequency and distribution

Trichomoniasis is the most frequent STI, with 5 million new cases per year worldwide. Young people, both men and women, are particularly affected. Trichomoniasis can be cured with antiparasitic drugs.


Condoms reduce the risk of getting infected with trichomonads. But an infection is possible despite condom use. It is important to detect and treat an infection early


If you have changing or multiple sexual partners during the same time period, talk to your doctor or another specialist
about sexually transmitted infections (including HIV) and get advice on whether tests may be necessary.

In case of an infection, provides tips on how to inform your partner.

And for everyone having sex:

Because everybody likes it differently: do the personalised Safer Sex Check at

Further Information

HIV & Sexually Transmitted Infections

The NPHS aims to reduce the number of new infections with HIV and other STIs and to avoid consequences with an adverse effect on health. Information on the programme can be found here.

Last modification 15.02.2022

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