The History of the Condom

Background Condoms are a barrier method of contraception that can prevent unwanted pregnancies and the spread of sexually transmitted infections. A male condom is a thin sheath that is placed over the user’s erect penis before sexual activity to prevent direct contact of the penis with the partner’s skin, mucosa, and genital secretions.1 Though not…

Parkinson’s Disease and Sexual Dysfunction

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder and the most common motor related disorder worldwide.1-3 PD belongs to a group of motor-related conditions known as Parkinsonism4 and is characterized by a loss of dopamine producing nerve cells called dopaminergenic neurons and the development of inclusions known as “Lewy bodies” in the brain.2,4…

HIV Testing

What is OraQuick?                     Oraquick is the world’s first At-Home HIV Test. After a long period of controversy concerning the morality of individuals having access to at-home HIV tests, the FDA finally approved Oraquick in 2012.¹ Its approval demonstrates that progress has been made towards the gradual…

Bacterial Meningitis

Bacterial Meningitis is caused by inflammation of the meninges, the protective membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord.1 A host of different strains of bacteria can cause meningitis, and people are more susceptible to certain strains at certain ages.1 Oftentimes, people carry the contagious bacteria, but do not show symptoms. However, if the bacteria break…

Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis (trick-oh-mo-NEYE-ah-sis), or “trich,” is an infection in the vagina or the male urethra and prostate gland caused by the microscopic, single-celled protozoan called Trichomonas vaginalis.1 While this protozoan can affect both males and females, it typically affects females more. About 3.7 million people have the infection in the United States, while only 30% ever develop symptoms.2 The good news is…

An Overview of Parasitic Infections

A parasitic infection is a disease that is transmitted by parasites. Parasites are microscopic organisms that live inside or on the exterior of a larger host, using the host as their food source.1 There are three types of parasites that target humans: protozoa, helminths, and ectoparasites. Protozoa are microscopic, one-celled organisms that can pass to…

STI Testing

NOTE: The term sexually transmitted infection (STI) is often used interchangeably with sexually transmitted disease (STD); this article will use STI to represent the group of conditions that are traditionally acquired through sexual contact. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are a major public health concern around the world. In fact, there are more than one million…

Molluscum Contagiosum

Molluscum contagiosum is a viral skin infection caused by the molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV) from the Poxviridae family, which causes pearl-like bumps on the skin. The virus can be transmitted through direct contact with infected skin, indirect contact via objects or materials that carry the virus (e.g., towels, razors, toys, clothing, bedding, gym equipment), and…

An Overview of STIs

The Basics Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are infections that can be spread through sexual contact such as intercourse, oral sex, kissing, or shared sex toys. Also referred to as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), these conditions are more often asymptomatic than not, which means an infected individual does not show signs of infection. To contract an STI,…