and other signs may not appear or may be so slight as to
After these signs disappear, the germs may stay
hidden for 10 to 20 years. If untreated, the disease
causes mental illness, blindness, heart disease, or even
Syphilis is not inherited, but a pregnant woman with
the disease can give it to her unborn child. These babies
are born with congenital syphilis. A baby with
congenital syphilis may be born dead or deformed.
Congenital syphilis can be prevented if it is detected and
treated in time.
The signs of syphilis may resemble many other
diseases, or the signs may be slight and be unnoticed.
The disease can be detected by a blood test for syphilis.
If you have gonorrhea and dont get treatment, you
may become sterile. Gonorrhea can damage the sperm
ducts in males and the fallopian tubes in females. In men
and women, gonorrhea may result in crippling arthritis,
meningitis, or heart disease.
The signs of gonorrhea in males usually appear 3 to
5 days after sexual contact with an infected partner.
Most men have a pus discharge from the sex organ and a
painful, burning sensation during urination. Women
rarely have painful symptoms until gonorrhea has
seriously damaged their reproductive system. There
may be some vaginal discharge or burning during
urination, but women will usually have no symptoms
and will not know that they have gonorrhea until a
sexual partner has been infected.
If you have syphilis or gonorrhea, a cure is as near as
your medical department. But early treatment is
important. These diseases can be cured even in people
who have had the disease for a long time, but the damage
to the reproductive organs may be irreversible.
Self-treatment or pills from a friend are
Genital Herpes Infection
Genital herpes is an increasingly common viral
infection that produces recurrent, painful genital sores
similar to cold sores that occur around the mouth. At
this time, there is no known cure for genital herpes; the
infected person may have recurrences of lesions
throughout life. Individuals should avoid sexual
intercourse when the sores are present because the
herpes virus is infectious in this phase of the disease.
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome
The Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome
(AIDS) was first reported in the United States in mid
1981. AIDS is a serious illness and a public health
problem. Its the number one priority of the U.S. Public
AIDS is a serious condition characterized by a
defect in natural immunity (defense) against disease.
People who have AIDS are vulnerable to serious
illnesses that arent a threat to anyone whose immune
system is functioning normally. These illnesses are
referred to as opportunistic infections or diseases.
Investigators have discovered the virus that causes
AIDS. The virus is called either human immune virus
(HIV); human T-lymphotropic virus, type III (HTLV-3);
l y m p h a d e n o p a t h y a s s o c i a t e d v i r u s
( L AV ); or
AIDS-related virus (ARV). Most people infected with
the AIDS virus have no symptoms and feel well. Some
develop symptoms that may include tiredness; fever;
loss of appetite and weight; diarrhea; night sweats; and
swollen glands (lymph nodes), usually in the neck,
armpits, or groin. Anyone with these symptoms should
see a doctor if the symptoms continue for more than 2
AIDS is spread by sexual contact, needle sharing, or
less commonly, through blood or its components. The
risk of getting AIDS is increased by having multiple
sexual partners, either homosexual or heterosexual, and
sharing needles with people who use illicit drugs. The
occurrence of the AIDS in hemophilia patients and
persons receiving transfusions provides evidence of
transmission through blood. It may be transmitted from
infected mother to infant before, during, or shortly after