Because a person can have an STI without having obvious symptoms of a disease,
the term sexually transmitted infections (STIs) is the preferred usage, but the term
sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is still in use and considered to be acceptable
terminology. More than 1 million people worldwide get a sexually transmitted infection
every day. Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis cause about
half of these infections, and millions of people are living with herpes simplex virus
(HSV) and human papillomavirus (HPV) infections. Genital herpes is one of the
most prevalent STIs in the U.S., caused either by herpes simplex virus subtype 2
(HSV-2), a virus that almost exclusively causes genital infections or increasingly by
HSV type 1 (HSV-1), a type that causes both oral herpes (“cold sores”) and genital
herpes. More than 10% to 20% of new genital herpes infections are now caused by

STIs are caused by bacteria, viruses, and parasites and are spread predominantly
by sexual contact, including vaginal, anal, and oral sex. Some organisms causing
STIs can be spread through non-sexual means such as by blood products and tissue
transfer. Of the more than 30 pathogens known to be transmitted through sexual
contact, eight cause the greatest incidence of illness. Of these, four are currently
curable with antibiotics: syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and trichomoniasis. The
other four are viral infections that are not curable, but their impact on health can be
lessened through treatment: hepatitis B, herpes (HSV), HIV, and HPV. Hepatitis B
and HPV are preventable by vaccination, but HSV and HIV are not. The impossibility
of curing viral STIs and the increasing number of antibiotic-resistant bacterial
STIs highlights the importance of prevention by safe sexual practices.

This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information. I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in this blog or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Your Health with a Lifestyle Checklist (available in print or downloaded at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and elsewhere). Copyright 2021 by J. Joseph Speidel.