This Rare STI Might Actually Be Affecting Thousands Of People


If you're having non-monogamous, unprotected sex, please stop.

Stop for a lot of reasons, but also because a sexually-transmitted infection most of us never heard of called Mycoplasma genitalium is affecting thousands of people.

More than 9o percent of the infected men and more than half of the infected women don't report showing any symptoms.

This information comes from Britain's National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles, analyzing urine samples of about 4,500 people and finding over 1 percent of the population probably has MG. The highest risk group is between the ages of 25 and 44.

Much of the research surrounding MG in men is associated with chronic urethritis, or an infection of the urethra. Although there's less information on how MG impacts women, some research pointed to urethritis, cervicitis, pelvic inflammatory disease and female infertility, according to a study in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Although more research needs to be conducted on MG and how to treat it, there is one easy (and obvious) way to prevent it: You can use condoms.

And even if you are a dedicated condom user, you should still get tested because there are 20 million new STI cases reported each year, and half of them occur in people between the ages of 15 and 24.

Stay in the loop about your sexual health, people.

Citations: This Sexually Transmitted Infection You've Never Heard of May Soon Impact "Hundreds of Thousands" of People (Complex), Epidemiology of Mycoplasma genitalium in British men and women aged 16–44 years: evidence from the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal-3) (International Journal of Epidemiology), Mycoplasma genitalium: Should We Treat and How? (Clinical Infectious Diseases)