According to the World Health Organization, trichomoniasis is the most common curable sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the world. In most instances, trichomoniasis is asymptomatic in men and women. When trichomoniasis is present, it is common for women to demonstrate more pronounced clinical symptoms, whereas men may experience no symptoms.
Depending on the location of the STD in the genitourinary system, women may have the following symptoms of vaginitis (i.e., inflammation of the vagina): itching, burning, redness of the vulva, vaginal discharge from the vagina, and/or pain of the lower abdomen.
If trichomoniasis is left untreated, this condition may cause serious complications, which may include inflammation of the pelvic organs, infertility, premature birth for women, or chronic prostatitis in men.
If you or your partner is diagnosed with trichomoniasis, both individuals must seek treatment. Even though trichomoniasis is not considered a serious STD and can be cured in most cases, the presence of this condition increased the risk of acquiring other STDS including HIV. There is always the risk of acquiring a STD when sexually active, and therefore it important to always practice safe sex in order to stay healthy.
The cure for trichomoniasis did not arrive until after the mid-20th century. Only in 1960 did scientists discover metronidazole, which allowed for the effective treatment of trichomoniasis.
Metronidazole is a synthetic antibacterial and antiprotozoal preparation categorized as part of the 5-nitroimidazole group. Metronidazole works by inhibiting the synthesis of nucleic acids in the DNA of microorganisms. According to recommendations of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Metronidazole is the first and preferable choice for the treatment of both trichomoniasis and bacterial vaginosis. This pharmacotherapy is highly effective with only 2-5% of patients in the USA demonstrating resistance to metronidazole when used to treat Trichomonas vaginalis (causing trichomoniasis).
Metronidazole is the active ingredient in Flagyl. Doctors trust the effectiveness of Flagyl and prescribe it often for treating bacterial infections. Flagyl is effective for treating many sexually transmitted infections that may cause serious complications when treated with other inappropriate or ineffective therapy. Flagyl can be used not only for the treatment of urogenital infections, but also as a part of complex therapy for peptic ulcers.
More than a decade ago doctors used to prescribe metronidazole in high doses and for long durations when treating trichomoniasis. However, recent clinical trials demonstrated that the treatment of trichomoniasis does not require high doses of metronidazole. These recent reports confirm that the use of a single dose of metronidazole results in the same effect as a three, five, or seven-day treatment at high doses of 5-8 grams.
Therefore, the therapeutic regimen recommendation has changed to small-doses taken for a short period. Many doctors consider two grams of Flagil as being an effective single dose to treat trichomoniasis. However, some doctors follow more traditional schemes and prescribe lower doses for a longer period of time. Nevertheless, there are many therapeutic regimens for treating trichomoniasis, and the six most common are described as follows:
- 2 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken as a single dose
- 0.25 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken twice a day for ten days (the overall dose should not exceed 5 grams)
- 0.5 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken twice a day for seven days
- 0.25 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken three times a day for the first four days
- 0.25 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken twice a day for the last four days
- 2 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken twice a day for three days
- 1 g of Flagyl (metronidazole) taken twice a day for seven days
When taking Flagyl, it is not recommended to drink alcohol during active treatment as well as for 2-3 days following a course of therapy. If these instructions are not followed, there is a high risk of developing an adverse reaction such as nausea, rapid heartbeat, and/or general weakness. Only a doctor can choose and prescribe a right course of therapy for a patient. The above information describing the different possible regimens for treatment with Flagyl is provided only for informational purposes. You should always see a doctor prior to taking any medicine.
Most doctors will tell patients to make an appointment set for two weeks following a course of control test treatment. It is also recommended that the presence of pathogens relating to trichomoniasis be re-examined six months after treatment. If follow-up tests return clean at the six-month appointment, it is safe to assume trichomoniasis has been cured in full.