Yes, You Can Have An STD In Your Butt—The Signs You Should Know

Same goes for getting an anal infection of human papillomavirus, the most common sexually transmitted disease. One in four Americans, or around 80 million people, have HPV, according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. In addition to causing cervical, vaginal, penile, and mouth and throat cancers, HPV can cause genital or anal warts that look like little pieces of cauliflower, Ali says.

Anal chlamydia and gonorrhea, on the other hand, aren’t always so easy to spot.

Chlamydia and gonorrhea are far from rare. Chlamydia is the most commonly reported STD in the United States, especially in women 25 and under, and gonorrhea is also big in that age group. Although these STDs are often asymptomatic, typical signs of having one vaginally include pain or burning when urinating, increased vaginal discharge that might look or smell abnormal, and vaginal bleeding between periods.

Anally, chlamydia and gonorrhea work a bit differently. “The signs aren’t as well known as other traditional STD symptoms, like burning when you urinate,” Ali says. Instead, he explains, one of the most common symptoms is persistent, watery diarrhea—aka, a usual symptom of something like a stomach bug or case of food poisoning you think you just have to wait out.

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