Sexually Transmitted Infections: Resource Overview

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), also known as sexually transmitted infections, are infections spread by sexual contact. Except for colds and flu, STDs are the most common contagious diseases in the US. Common STDs include chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), human papillomavirus (HPV), syphilis, trichomoniasis, and hepatitis.

Ob-gyns, physicians whose primary responsibility is women’s health, are best suited to help screen and treat women for STDs.

Here are the key publications and resources for ob-gyns, other women’s health care providers, and patients, from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and other sources.

Jump to:
Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Syphilis, & Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Screening & Treatment
External Organizations 

Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Syphilis, & Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Committee Opinion: Dual Therapy for Gonococcal Infections

“Dual Therapy for Gonococcal Infections,” issued by ACOG in November 2015, provides recommendations for dual antibiotic treatment of infections by Neisseria gonorrhoeae, commonly known as “gonorrhea,” with ceftriaxone and azithromycin, and addresses circumstances in which patients may need to be retested for infection.

Committee Opinion: Expedited Partner Therapy

Expedited Partner Therapy,” issued by ACOG in June 2018, recommends the use of expedited partner therapy in the management of gonorrhea and chlamydial infections when the partner is unlikely or unable to get in-person evaluation and treatment.

Patient FAQ: Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and Syphilis

Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and Syphilis,” issued by ACOG in December 2016, provides information on gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis, including the causes, signs, symptoms, treatment, and prevention of these STIs.

Patient FAQ: Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)

“Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID),” issued by ACOG in September 2015, provides information on PID, an infection of the female reproductive organs most commonly caused by the STIs gonorrhea and chlamydia. If includes information on the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of PID. 



Practice Bulletin: Management of Herpes in Pregnancy (members only)

Management of Herpes in Pregnancy”, issued by ACOG in June 2007 (reaffirmed 2016), provides an overview of the types of maternal and neonatal genital herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection. It includes information the risks of transmission during pregnancy and provides guidelines for screening, diagnosis, management, and treatment.

Patient FAQ: Genital Herpes

Genital Herpes,” issued by ACOG in September 2016, includes information for women on the STI genital herpes. It covers causes, diagnosis, treatment, preventing transmission, and managing herpes during pregnancy.



Practice Bulletin: Viral Hepatitis in Pregnancy (members only)

“Viral Hepatitis in Pregnancy,” issued by ACOG in October 2007 (reaffirmed 2016), describes the different subtypes of hepatitis and their management during pregnancy, including treatment and the risk of perinatal transmission. It recommends routine prenatal screening of all pregnant women by HBsAg testing.

Patient FAQ: Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in Pregnancy

“Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in Pregnancy,” issued by ACOG in November 2013, features information on how hepatitis B and hepatitis C infections are managed during pregnancy and the impact these STDs can have on the pregnancy and baby.

Patient FAQ: Protecting Yourself Against Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C

“Protecting Yourself Against Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C,” issued by ACOG in December 2016, provides women with information on hepatitis B and hepatitis C infections, including testing, symptoms, management, treatment, and prevention.


Screening & Treatment

Committee Opinion: Well-Woman Visit

Committee Opinion: Well-Woman Visit
"Well-Woman Visit," published by ACOG in October 2018, explains the importance of the annual well-woman exam, including screening, evaluation and counseling, and immunizations based on age and risk factors.

Book of Guidelines: Guidelines for Perinatal Care (members only)

Guidelines for Perinatal Care,” issued by ACOG and the American Academy of Pediatrics in September 2017, is a 580-page publication with recommendations for care of pregnant women, their fetuses, and their neonates. It includes information on screening and treatment of sexually transmitted infections in Chapter 5, "Preconception and Antepartum Care," and in Chapter 10, "Perinatal Infections."

Committee Opinion: Addressing Health Risks of Noncoital Sexual Activity

“Addressing Health Risks of Noncoital Sexual Activity,” issued by ACOG in December 2013 (reaffirmed 2015), discusses how ob-gyns can best discuss the risks of STI transmission to patients who engage sexual behavior such as oral and anal sex. It recommends patients be counseled in the correct and consistent use of condoms, barrier protection during oral sex, and cleaning of sex toys.

Committee Opinion: Improving Awareness of and Screening for Health Risks Among Sex Workers

"Improving Awareness of and Screening for Health Risks Among Sex Workers," issued by ACOG in July 2017, addresses screening and the risk of sexually transmitted infections among women who engage in sex work.

Practice Bulletin: Gynecologic Care for Women and Adolescents With Human Immunodeficiency Virus

"Practice Bulletin: Gynecologic Care for Women and Adolescents With Human Immunodeficiency Virus," issued by ACOG in October 2016, discusses health screening, family planning, prepregnancy care, and managing common gynecologic problems in women and adolescents infected with HIV.

Patient FAQ: Routine Tests During Pregnancy

“Routine Tests During Pregnancy,” issued by ACOG in January 2016, provides information on tests routinely given to pregnant women, including tests for the STDs syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV.

External Organizations

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides guidelines on the treatment of sexually transmitted infections for ob-gyns and other healthcare providers.