What is the morphology of T vaginalis?

Updated: Jan 02, 2020
  • Author: Darvin Scott Smith, MD, MSc, DTM&H; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

T vaginalis trichomonads are approximately the size of white blood cells (about 10-20 μm long and 2-14 μm wide), although this may vary. Trichomonads have 4 flagella that project from the organism’s anterior and 1 flagellum that extends backward across the middle of the organism, forming an undulating membrane. An axostyle, a rigid structure, extends from the organism’s posterior. [15, 16]

Trichomonas vaginalis. (A) Two trophozoites of T v Trichomonas vaginalis. (A) Two trophozoites of T vaginalis obtained from in vitro culture, stained with Giemsa. (B) Trophozoite of T vaginalis in vaginal smear, stained with Giemsa. Images courtesy of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Trichomoniasis overview. Trichomoniasis overview.

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