STI Testing – How, What and When!
December 11, 2018 | In Uncategorized
STI Testing – How, What and When! Holdsworth House General Practitioner, Dr Shiva Rayar, speaks about STI testing in the video below
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, which is a time for giving. But ideally not of an STI. Let’s talk about sex and let’s talk about you. Getting an STI test can be unnerving and talking about your sex life can be uncomfortable. But it really shouldn’t be, because sex is natural. It’s biological. So, what’s involved with an STI test? The first question is – Do I need an STI test? If you have more than one partner in a year then yes you do. You should be getting tested yearly. But we often test people up to 4 times a year depending on how many partners they have and what risk category they fall into. Your doctor can tell you more about that.
What does an STI test involve. It involves a urine test and a blood test. But it can also include a throat swab, vaginal swab or a rectal swab depending on the sort of sex you have. Pretty much never do we stick a swab down anyone’s penis. You don’t need to worry about that one.
What do we test for? We check for bacteria such as chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis. These can be treated with antibiotics. We also test for viruses such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. Hepatitis B can be prevented with a course of vaccinations. Hepatitis C can be cured with treatment now and HIV can be managed really well so that a person can have a normal life and a normal life span. We also have rapid testing which means that you can get your HIV results within 20 minutes.
It’s a good idea to invest in your sexual health and have a conversation with your doctor, because we can help you to prevent getting STIs through education, through vaccinations and through medications such as PrEP if its relevant. Also, we can help to diagnose an STI that you weren’t aware of and that benefits not only you but your current partner and your future partners as well.
So if you do have any burning questions or any burning symptoms please go and see your doctor.