Last Updated on June 4, 2020 by Nancy Carteron, MD, FACR
STD Symptoms – LGV
Symptoms of LGV can begin a few days to several months after coming in contact with the bacteria. The time from infection to the development of a blister or other symptoms is usually between 3 to 30 days but may not be noticeable for up to several months. Typically, the blister becomes a sore that quickly heals and often goes unnoticed.
LGV has three stages. In its primary stage, the disease is more likely to be detected in men; it may go unnoticed in both men and women. After an incubation period of 3 to 30 days, a small painless ulcer or blister usually develops in the genital area.
Second-stage LGV develops between 1 and 6 weeks later. In this stage, the infection spreads to the lymphatic system, forming buboes (swellings) in the lymph nodes of the groin area. The buboes often merge, soften, and rupture, forming sinuses and fistulas (hollow passages and ducts) that carry an infectious bloody discharge to the outside of the body. Patients with second-stage LGV may also have fever, nausea, headaches, pain in their joints, skin rashes, and enlargement of the spleen or liver.
Third-stage LGV, which is sometimes called anogenitorectal syndrome, develops in about 25% of patients. Third-stage LGV is marked by rectal pain, constipation, a discharge containing pus or bloody mucus, and the development of strictures (narrowing or tightening of a body passage) in the rectum or vagina. A patient can develop chronic abscesses or fistulae in the anal area or in the vagina in women. Long-term blockages in the lymph nodes can produce elephantiasis, a condition in which the patient’s upper legs and groin area become greatly enlarged.
General LGV symptoms may include:
- Blood in the stool
- Blood or pus from the rectum
- Drainage through the skin from lymph nodes in the groin
- Lower abdominal pain
- Open sores in the genital area
- Painful bowel movements
- Skin rashes
- Small painless sore on the male genitals or in the female genital tract
- Swelling and redness of the skin in the groin area
- Swelling of the labia
- Swelling of the lymph nodes in the groin area
Occasionally, LGV can cause symptoms in the joints, lungs, liver, nervous system or eyes.
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