Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) – more commonly known as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) – are extremely common. That’s why STD testing is essential for anyone who is sexually active.
These tests can detect the presence of infectious diseases, such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV. STD testing is typically done using a blood test or a swab taken from the genital area.
STDs We Can Test For
At Community Concierge Care (C3 Cares), we can test and treat a variety of STDs. Whether you're dealing with chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, or something else – we’re here to help. We understand that these conditions can be embarrassing or worrisome, so we want you to know that you're not alone. Our compassionate and professional medical staff will work with you to find the best treatment option, whatever your situation.
Here are some of the most common STDs we test for:
Chlamydia is very common. The good news is that, with the proper antibiotics, chlamydia is curable. Left untreated, however, chlamydia can lead to serious health complications, such as pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), infertility, and ectopic pregnancy.
Many people with chlamydia do not experience any symptoms at all. When symptoms are present, they may include burning during urination, discharge from the vagina or penis, and pain in the lower abdomen.
Chlamydia testing is done one of two ways:
- Swabbing – a swab is inserted into or around the cervix, urethra, penis, or rectum to obtain a sample. The sample is then sent to a lab for testing.
- Urine testing – You will be asked to urinate into a provided container. The urine sample will then be sent to a laboratory for testing.
Gonorrhea is an STD that can affect men and women. It is caused by bacteria passed through sexual contact with an infected person.
Gonorrhea testing involves taking a swab from the genital region, and/or a urinalysis.
Left untreated, gonorrhea can cause serious health problems, including pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), infertility, and an increased risk of an HIV infection.
Hepatitis B and C are viral infections that cause inflammation of the liver.
Both are considered sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) that can be passed on through unprotected sex. If you think you may have been exposed to either virus, it's important to get tested as soon as possible. The most common way to test for hepatitis B and C is with a blood test. We may also order a liver function test to check for damage to your liver.
Hepatitis B and C are chronic conditions that can cause serious liver damage and lead to cirrhosis or liver cancer. Treatment for hepatitis B and C typically involves antiviral medications. In some cases, a liver transplant may be necessary.
Many people are infected with the herpes virus and don't even know it. Herpes can lie dormant in your body for years, only to suddenly become active again. There are many types of herpes, with Type 1 and Type 2 herpes being the most common. Type 1 herpes causes cold sores around the mouth, while type 2 causes sores in and around the genitals.
A simple blood test can tell you if you have the virus. For the test, blood is drawn from a vein in your arm. The sample is then sent to a lab for testing. There is no cure for herpes, but treatments such as antiviral medications can help control the condition.
HIV, or the human immunodeficiency virus, is a serious and life-threatening condition that attacks the body's immune system.
HIV testing is usually performed with a blood test.
There are two types of HIV tests:
- Antibody tests – Antibody tests look for antibodies that your body produces in response to the virus.
- Antigen/antibody tests – In addition to antibodies, these combo tests also look for antigens, which are proteins found on the surface of the virus.
Antibody and antigen/antibody tests can both be used to diagnose an HIV infection.
If you think you might have been exposed to HIV, it’s important to get tested as soon as possible. There is a 12-week “window period” after you are first infected with HIV in which an HIV test may miss the infection and erroneously come back negative. So, even if you test negative right after a potential HIV exposure, you will need to retest at least 12 weeks later to be sure of your results.
There are many types of human papilloma virus (HPV). Most people with HPV don't even know they have it. Some types of HPV can cause genital warts, while others can lead to cancer of the cervix, vulva, vagina, anus, or penis.
HPV tests are currently only available for women (not men). The test is generally conducted during a pelvic exam. Your healthcare provider will gently scrape a sample of cells from your cervix, which will be analyzed in a laboratory for the presence of any abnormal cells.
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection that can cause serious health problems if left untreated. Signs and symptoms of syphilis may vary, depending on the stage of the infection, and may include paper-thin sores on the genitals or around the mouth, a rash, fever, fatigue, and muscle aches. Left untreated, syphilis can damage the brain, heart, and other vital organs.
There are a few different ways to test for syphilis. The most common method is a blood test, which looks for the presence of antibodies to the bacterium that causes syphilis. Another option is a swab test, which involves taking a swab from a sore or lesion and testing it for the bacteria.
Syphilis is easily treated with antibiotics, so it is important to get tested if you believe you may have been exposed.
STI/STD Testing in Washington, D.C.,
Stop worrying about whether you might have a sexually transmitted infection – know your status with a simple test. At Community Concierge Care (C3 Cares), we’ll be with you every step of the way.