STI / HIV: STI's. Lymphogranuloma venereum
What is LGV?
- Lymphogranuloma venereum, in short LGV, is a rare STI.
- This infection used to occur only in tropical areas, but now this infection also occurs among men having unsafe sex with other men (msm).
- Without treatment LGV can cause serious problems.
What causes LGV?
- LGV is caused by a variant of the chlamydia bacteria.
- Especially unsafe anal sex, the joint use of sex toys and fist fucking are a risk.
How can the infection be diagnosed?
- LGV can be diagnosed by first taking a chlamydia test.
- If this test is positive, a subsequent test can show whether it is LGV.
- If you don’t have chlamydia, you can’t have LGV either.
What are the complaints?
LGV develops in two stages:
- You have a painless bump or ulcer on your penis (glans, foreskin) or anus. You often don’t notice the first bumps or ulcers.
- They heal spontaneously and the infection passes to the next stage without treatment.
- Painful lymph gland swelling in the groin.
- These lymph glands get swollen by heaping up the infection fluid, so that these glands can burst.
- This stage gives you fever, muscle and pain in your joints (a feverish feeling).
- In contrast with a ‘normal’ chlamydia treatment, you need a long antibiotics treatment in case of LGV during three weeks.
- Afterwards it is necessary to check to make sure that the infection is gone.
- You can always get infected again.
If LGV is not treated, this may cause:
- A fistula,
- Genital ulcers,
- Rectum infection,
- Fenital thickening or hardening of the skin of the genitalia.
- LGV is transmitted by sexual contact, therefore it is important that your sex partners are also examined.
- This prevents you from getting infected again or prevents your sex partner from infecting others.
- Your sex partners can also have a test and, if necessary, a treatment.
- LGV is a serious STI!
- If you don’t get at treatment there may be serious complications.
- During the treatment no anal, vaginal or oral sex.