A horrible new sexually transmitted disease was diagnosed within the past year - and it's on the rise in the United States among women between the ages 15 and 25 years old. The disease is named donovanosis.
Donovanosis causes ulcers to grow and spread on a person's intimate region, before the flesh of the genitals starts to eat itself.
Donovanosis is transmitted through skin-on-skin genital contact. It's particularly contagious between a person with a bleeding ulcer. If left untreated, a woman develops ulcers on her genitals that eventually destroy genital tissue, causing permanent damage, scarring and discoloration. Most UK and US cases occur after patients have unprotected sex in endemic countries - tropical locations, such as Papua New Guinea, India, New Guinea, parts of the Caribbean, central Australia and southern Africa.
According to the Institute for Sexual Health, a few dozen cases of donovanosis occurred last year in the United Kingdom, and the number of cases is rising fast.
Reports on the disease are saying that, "patients are at risk of extragenital infections that can occur in the pelvic regions, or in intra-abdominal organs, bones or mouth. The lesions may also develop secondary bacterial infections."
While antibiotic treatment may stop the progression of lesions, patients are at risk of relapse for 6-18 months post-treatment. According to the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH), there have been no prior cases reported in the U.K.
A pharmacist with chemist-4-u.com told news outlets that any delay in treatment “could cause the flesh around the genitals to literally rot away.”
An update on the infected patient was not provided, nor was it clear if any sexual partners she had encountered were also infected. Coming into contact with a victim’s bleeding ulcer could be enough to transmit the disease.