Can a man catch thrush from a female partner?

Thrush is a yeast infection caused by a fungus known as Candida albicans, which usually lives harmlessly in the body. The fungus can lead to thrush if your body is unable to keep it under to control  for example, if you have a weakened immune system or you’re taking antibiotics.

It is possible for thrush to be passed on through sexual intercourse, although this is uncommon.

Signs and symptoms of thrush

In men, symptoms of thrush can include:

  • redness, itching and irritation at the site of infection (often at the head of the penis)
  • thick, lumpy discharge under the foreskin
  • pain when passing urine

The symptoms of thrush are similar in women, but the vagina is usually affected instead.

If you have thrush, it is best to avoid having sex until you have completed a course of treatment and the infection has cleared up.

Further information:

Page last reviewed: 29/05/2013

Next review due: 29/05/2015