Understanding Trichomoniasis in Men: A Complete Guide

Rishabh Mehta
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Kaushal

Review medical content on WOW Rx Pharmacy, so that accurate drug use information is easily accessible to everybody.
Dr. Akansha is a licensed Clinical Pharmacologist. She possesses remarkable knowledge in Pharmacovigilance, prescription analysis, drug information, and drug safety services. Additionally, she is a keen learner and an educator.

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trichomoniasis in men

Trichomoniasis, also known as trich, is a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) common in men. 

According to WHO, in 2020, 82.6 million men aged between 15 and 49 years got Trichomonas vaginalis infection. 

This infection is mostly asymptomatic in men and can be prevented and cured. 

However, for preventing or treating Trichomoniasis, it is vital to understand its causes, analyze the symptoms, and get a proper diagnosis. 

So, this article presents detailed information about Trichomoniasis in men to raise awareness and enrich knowledge about this STI. 

What is Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis is an STI caused by a protozoan parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis.

This protozoan cannot survive well in external environments and is extremely sensitive to dry conditions. It thrives mainly in body fluids.

Trichomonas vaginalis is found in men in the prostate and urethra. It multiplies in the body by binary fission (parent cell splits into two daughter cells).

Despite being asymptomatic in most men, sometimes symptoms like Prostatitis and Urethritis appear in a time of 5-28 days. 

About 10 percent of the men infected with Trichomoniasis suffer from Urethritis.

Symptoms of Trichomoniasis in men

painful erectionSource: DAPA_IMAGES
Pain while urinating

About 70 to 80 percent of the men infected with Trichomoniasis do not observe any symptoms.

For the rest of the cases, the incubation period (the span between getting infected and observing symptoms) stretches for a month. 

Some may not see symptoms till much later.

The most noticeable symptoms observed in men infected by Trichomoniasis are:

  • Frequent urination
  • Burning sensation or pain while urinating
  • Discharge from the penis
  • Pain during ejaculation
  • Itching and irritation in the penis
  • Soreness, redness, and swelling of the foreskin or head of the penis

However, these symptoms are common for many medical problems. So, it can get tricky to figure out the exact issue. 

One must consult a doctor to confirm the problem before jumping to conclusions or starting with the treatment.

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To know more about the symptoms of Trichomoniasis, Trichomoniasis Symptoms: Signs of a Parasitic STI

How do men get Trichomoniasis

The primary means of spreading Trichomoniasis is sexual contact. Having unprotected sex with an infected partner passes the infection.

An infected man having sex with men can transmit the infection to them through genital contact, even if ejaculation is not involved.

Trichomonas vaginalis is also present in vaginal fluids making men having sex with women equally prone to the infection.

Besides direct sexual contact, the infection can be transmitted via sharing sex toys with an infected person.

In some instances, non-sexual transmission can happen from toilet seats, shared bath water, towels, and swimming pools.

A few rare cases of prenatal transmission, also called mother-to-child transmission, can also occur.

Most of these are avoidable with safe sex practices like using condoms and having transparency with the partner.

Trichomoniasis testing in men

Urine sample (urine culture test)Source: pixelshot
Urine sample (urine culture test)

If you or your healthcare provider suspects Trichomoniasis, the first step is to examine the genital area physically.

Once completed, a doctor can ask you questions about the issues faced or symptoms observed. 

After that, if needed, the medical expert can conduct:

  • Swab test: In this test, a swab or small brush is used to collect samples of body fluids from the penis for lab testing
  • Urine test: A urine sample can be collected in a container at home or hospital for laboratory analysis

Trichomoniasis treatment for men

Trichomoniasis in men can be treated in 7 days with medications. 

Antibiotics are the best suited for this purpose. 

The first advised treatment for Trichomoniasis in men is a single 2-gram dose of Metronidazole.

If Trichomoniasis is left untreated in men, it can cause complications like Urethritis, UTIs, Infertility, Prostatitis, and Epididymitis. In case of infection, consult a doctor immediately for proper treatment.

If the person encounters an infected partner again and does not heal from the infection completely, repeating the same dosage of Metronidazole is recommended. 

In case of no secondary encounters with an infected person but persistent infection, two doses of 500 mg Metronidazole should be given for a week. 

An alternative to Metronidazole is a single 2-gram dosage of Tinidazole.

One must avoid alcohol consumption with Metronidazole and Tinidazole as it can cause nausea,  increased heart rate, or vomiting. The medicines alone can cause heartburn. 

So, one must only consume them after consulting a medical expert. 


Trichomoniasis is a common Sexually Transmitted Infection. 

Trichomonas vaginalis causes it, and it mostly remains asymptomatic. 

However, sometimes noticeable symptoms like frequent urination, discharge from the penis, swelling, and soreness of the head of the penis are observed.

These signs should not be ignored. One must seek medical treatment as Trichomoniasis does not go away by itself. 

Fortunately, the infection can be diagnosed and treated efficiently. Tests like swab tests or urine tests are used to check for Trichomoniasis.

If infected, antibiotics like Metronidazole and Tinidazole for a week will cure the infection.

Having transparency with the partner, timely treatment, and using protection during sex can ensure safety from this STI and promote better health.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does Trichomoniasis last in males? 

If left untreated, Trichomoniasis will not go away by itself. It can last for months and even decades after infection. At this time, it can pass on to someone else and may worsen. Fortunately, it is curable with the apt treatment. Only after successful treatment does the infection clear after seven days. 

How can you tell if a man has Trichomoniasis? 

Mostly, it gets difficult to tell if a man has Trichomoniasis as it is asymptomatic. In a few cases, one may experience problems like discharge from the penis, frequent urination or the urge to pass out urine, soreness, swelling or redness of the penis, and pain while ejaculating or urinating. 

What happens if a man goes untreated for trich? 

If left untreated, Trichomoniasis in men can cause problems like infection in the urethra or prostate gland. These can involve Urethritis (swelling of the urethra),  chronic Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs), and chronic bladder infections. Moreover, it can also increase the risk of catching other STIs like HIV. 

How does Trichomoniasis start in men? 

Trichomoniasis starts in men with a protozoan called Trichomonas vaginalis. This parasite passes on primarily through genital contact during oral, vaginal, or anal sex via body fluids (semen and vaginal fluids). Non-sexual contact through toilet seats, swimming pools, shared towels, and bath water can also pass the infection.

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