Hesperian Health Guides

Trichomonas (Trich)

Trichomonas is an infection caused by a parasite. For women, it is very uncomfortable and itchy. Men usually have no signs. If the infection is inside the penis, it can pass to a woman during sex without a condom.

Trichomonas is not dangerous but can irritate the vagina, which makes it easier for a woman to get other STIs, including HIV.

a woman smelling her fingers
Bad-smelling discharge from the vagina is often trichomonas.
  • discharge that is gray, yellow, or green
  • bad-smelling discharge
  • red and itchy vagina
  • pain or burning while urinating

Take metronidazole or tinidazole by mouth. Pregnant women should not take tinidazole.

Treat the person’s partner or partners with the same medicine.
To feel better, sit in a pan of clean, warm water for 15 minutes as often as possible. This is soothing to the genitals and will speed healing. Avoid sex until you and your partner are finished with treatment and all the signs are gone.

This page was updated:16 Oct 2019