Symptoms of a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI)

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may cause many different symptoms in both women and men.

In women

  • A thick, discoloured, or foul-smelling vaginal discharge. Symptoms may get worse over a period of several days to 2 weeks.
  • Pain, burning, or itching while urinating for longer than 24 hours
  • Fever
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Pain or a feeling of heaviness in the pelvis or lower abdomen
  • Itching, tingling, burning, or pain in the genitals
  • Sores, lumps, blisters, rashes, or warts on or around the genitals
  • Vaginal spotting or bleeding after sexual intercourse
  • Other symptoms of an infection, such as fever, rash, fatigue or lack of energy, or swollen glands (lymph nodes)

In men

  • Painful urination. (This is often the first symptom.)
  • Fever
  • Cloudy urine
  • Abnormal discharge from the penis
  • Crusting at the tip of the penis
  • Sores, lumps, blisters, rashes, or warts on or around the genitals
  • Pain, swelling, or tenderness in the scrotum (epididymitis)
  • Itching, tingling, pain, or burning of the genitals
  • Deep pelvic ache (prostatitis)

These symptoms require medical attention. Avoid any sexual contact until you have been checked by your health professional.

Is it an emergency?

If you or someone in your care has chest pains, difficulty breathing, or severe bleeding, it could be a life-threatening emergency. Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number immediately.
If you are concerned about a possible poisoning or exposure to a toxic substance, call Poison Control now at 1-800-567-8911.

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