There has been a recent rise in cases of Shigella among men who have sex with men. If you’re not sure what Shigella is or how to protect yourself, read on!
Shigella is caused by bacteria found in poo (faeces) getting in your mouth – which means you can get shigella from rimming, oral sex, or putting your fingers in your mouth after handling used condoms, douches or sex toys
If you have Shigella, you may have an upset stomach including fever, stomach ache, and diarrhoea which might have blood in it. These symptoms can last for around a week.
To lower your risk, you can wash your hands, bum and genitals after sex. You could use a dental dams, condoms, and fisting gloves to protect you when having oral sex, fisting, and fingering
You should change condoms between partners, and between anal and oral sex, whether they’re on a penis, hands, or sex toys
Shigella is easily treated with a course of antibiotics so if you think you have Shigella, go to a sexual health (GUM) clinic or your GP and explain your symptoms, saying that you think you may have picked up an infection from sex