Chancroid (caused by Haemophilus ducreyi, a bacteria)
NOTE: Chancroid is rare in the U.S. If you have signs or symptoms of any sexually transmitted disease you should see a health care provider for evaluation and possible treatment.
Download PDF versions below, formatted for print:
- STD Facts: Chancroid (English) (PDF)
- STD Facts: Chancroid (Spanish) (PDF)
- STD Facts: Chancroid (Amharic) (PDF)
- STD Facts: Chancroid (Oromo) (PDF)
- STD Facts: Chancroid (Somali) (PDF)
Signs and Symptoms
- Painful and draining open sores in the genital area
- Painful, swollen lymph nodes in the groin
- Begin 4-10 days after exposure
- Vaginal sex
- Oral sex
- Anal sex
- Skin to skin contact with infected lesion or sore
If left untreated, chancroid:
- Can spread to sex partners
- Makes it easier to transmit or acquire HIV during sex
- Can cause destruction of foreskin tissue on penis
- Sores can become infected with other germs
- Avoiding vaginal, oral or anal sex is the best way to prevent STDs.
- Latex condoms, when used consistently and correctly, can reduce the risk of chancroid only when the infected areas are covered or protected by the condom.
- Always use latex condoms during vaginal and anal sex.
- Use a latex condom for oral sex on a penis.
- Use a latex barrier (dental dam or condom cut in half) for oral sex on a vagina or anus.
- Limit the number of sex partners.
- Notify sex partners immediately if infected.
- Infected sex partners should be tested and treated.
Testing and Treatment
- Get a test from a medical provider if infection is suspected.
- Chancroid can be cured using medication prescribed by a medical provider.
- Partners should be treated at the same time.
NOTE: A person can be re-infected after treatment.
For more information, contact:
STD, HIV and TB Section
Minnesota Department of Health
Minnesota Family Planning
and STD Hotline
1-800-783-2287 Voice/TTY; (651) 645-9360 (Metro)
CDC National STD and AIDS Hotlines
1-800-CDC-INFO; 1-888-232-6348 TTY
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