[Question #658] Should I Look for something other than STD?

47 months ago
Hello, I browsed some of the questions and saw some that were similar to my situation. Over A year ago I had unprotected sex (stupid me) I know. I think a week later I started to feel itching in the urethra and itching on the outside of penis.  I noticed that I would get a sharp pain in my lower abdomen that would come and go.  My testicles would have a dull ache pain that still come and ago today.  Never any discarge or burning. Sometimes I would notice a very very very slight itch after I urine.  I have tested for all std at the appropriate time to yield accurate results. Doctors have told me to ignore what I feel and try to move on.  It's there any std that will cause itching in the urethra and on the outside of penis at the same time;without any discharge?
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
47 months ago
Welcome to the forum.

Thanks for reviewing questions similar to your own. Having done that, I'm sure you won't be surprised by my replies.

No STD causes symptoms like yours. With some online searching, which you may have done, you will find claims about such symptoms being due to nongonococcal urethritis (NGU), including chlamydia, Mycoplasma genitalium, Ureaplasma and trichomonas, as well as herpes and others. But there simply are no scientific data or clinical experience of experts to support them. If there is any connection of your symptoms with the sexual exposure a year ago, it is probably psychological. The mind is a powerful thing -- while I am not a believer that symptoms are created by anxiety out of the blue ("psychosomatic"), for sure anxious people often perceive normal body sensations and minor discomforts as being more promiment and bothersome than they otherwise would be. In any case, the standard STD tests that you undoubtedly had are highly reliable.

For those reasons, I supect your doctors are exactly right. I hope they put their advice in more sensitive and less blunt terms than "ignore and move on", but I truly believe you have no STD or other infection from the sexual exposure described, nothing that will ever cause any kind of harm to you or your current or future sex partner(s).

I hope this has helped. Best wishes--  HHH, MD


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47 months ago
You are so right sir. Searching the net, trichomonas stuck out like a sore thumb and scared me to death.  I read that most men have no symptoms if infected with trich. If symptoms due appear, would it be all the symptoms associated with trich it just one?  Or does it varies from person to person. 
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
47 months ago
Hmm.... I'm not sure why trichomonas would have "stuck out like a sore thumb" with online searching. Trich rarely causes symptoms in men, and just as noted above, there is absolutely no evidence that it causes symptoms like yours. If you were to somehow be diagnosed with it, I would not assume that infection and your symptoms were connected, but instead would assume you had asymptomatic trichomonas plus another cause for your symptoms. In any case, trich is believed to usually clear up in men long before a year; and it's pretty much harmless for men and usually for their partners as well. It's really not something to be concerned about.

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47 months ago
Trich stuck out because the symptoms were irritation in the urethra,discharge and may cause itching in the surrounding areas. I have all symptoms but discharge. Most facts about trich,even on the cdc website say that trich is hard to detect in men. I did test for trich and it was negative. My question is why is there so much belief in a positive result versus negative results? It seems like you should believe without a doubt that if results are positive then you do have trich. If it's negative, then comes the possibility of a false negative. The itching in the pubic hairs,itching in the urethra,itching on the shaft of penis as well as a on and off pinching feeling at the tip of penis is driving me crazy. Are there any other possibilities that you think I need to be looking at? 
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
47 months ago
You are misinterpreting information about trich, and/or some of the websites are doing so. The symptoms you describe are typical for women, not men. If men were to develop genital itching from trich, it would be strictly limited to the urethra -- mild dysuria (painful urination) in men is often felt by such men as an itch more than pain. But trich absolutely cannot cuas the sort of penile and generalized genital itching you describe. So this information does not change my opinion or advice above. Please also re-read my comments about trich clearing on its own and its lack of harm.

Having said all that, treatment of trichomonas is simple, just a single dose of metronidazole (Flagyl and generics) or tindidazole (Tindamax). If you seek such treatment, do not get your hopes up. I would be very surprised if it resolves any of your symptoms.

Most likely you're just going to have to live with your symptoms, as your own doctors advised. Once you understand -- emotionally as well as intellectually -- that nothing serious is wrong, the symptoms likely will fade. In the meantime, you should not say anything to sex partners and should not hesitate to have unprotected sex (assuming low risk for other STDs, of course).

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