Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are common and these communicable diseases are things that can happen to anyone who is sexually active. Understanding the diagnostic process and when STD testing is necessary will help you to get tested at the right times to help in protecting your health. Testing is important because if you do develop an STD getting prompt treatment can help to reduce the risk of complications.
How STD Testing Works
STD testing involves either a blood test, urine test or a swab. All types of testing are easy and non-invasive.
Blood testing requires a sample of blood from a vein. A needle will be inserted into your vein and blood is then collected in a glass vial. The blood will be analyzed in a laboratory. The blood collection process should not cause any pain, but there can be a slight prick when the needle puncture the skin to get into a vein.
Urine testing is the easiest form of STD testing, but it only works for a few of them. For this test all you will need to do is urinate in a plastic cup and then give it to the healthcare provider assisting you. The urine is then analyzed in a laboratory. There is no pain associated with this STD test.
Swabbing can be done either orally or genitally. If you have an STD that causes lesions, this is the type of test that is usually done because the lesion itself can be swabbed. For some swabbing tests, the vagina or penis can be swabbed, or the mouth. Your doctor will explain exactly what needs to be swabbed to test you. Swabbing tests are completely painless and they only take a minute to get an adequate culture of the lesion or area of the body.
Top Rated NYC Physician
Dr. Gafanovich is performing STD testing as a
part of her annual check-up.
After the proper specimens and samples are collected, your doctor will let you know what you need to do next. Depending on what is being tested for, you may be able to call in to get your results in a few days or you may need to set up a follow up appointment to receive the results in person. If your test is positive, your doctor will instruct you as to the proper treatment to ensure that the disease is properly treated.
STD Testing Recommendations
The following testing guidelines should be followed for STDs:
- Chlamydia testing should be done by all women are who under 25 and sexually active, pregnant women and men who engage in sexual intercourse with other men. Gonorrhea follows the same testing guidelines.
- Everyone who is between 13 and 64 should have at least one HIV test done. These same guidelines are true for both syphilis and hepatitis too.