March 8, 2016 – Mycoplasma


Anchor lead:  A newly identified sexually transmitted infection is making the rounds, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Mycoplasma genitalium is the name of a recently identified organism that is sexually transmitted and may be an important cause of infertility.  Maria Trent, an STI and adolescent medicine expert at Johns Hopkins, describes what’s known so far.

Trent: There’s a new sexually transmitted infection that’s now appeared in the CDC guidelines, Mycoplasma genitalium, a sexually transmitted infection for which we can’t even test people in practice yet.  Data from our larger trial of women with PID, which is the complicated sexually transmitted infection, actually shows we have rates of Mycoplasma genitalium of almost 20% in women with this disorder.  Oftentimes the treatment regimens may not adequately cover it, which is also what we’re observing.  :27

Trent says if there is no way to diagnose the infection then targeting treatment is impossible, so efforts are underway to standardize testing.  She says the organism may also render people more susceptible to HIV infection, so recognizing and treating it is critical.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.