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Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) FAQs

For general information about STD/STI infections in the United States you can refer to https://www.cdc.gov/std/stats17/default.htm For recent articles about infection rate increases within the United States you can read https://edition.cnn.com/2018/08/28/health/std-rates-united-states-2018-bn/index.html and https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/28/health/std-chlamydia-gonorrhea-syphilis.html

Which STD/STI is the most common in the United States?

Chlamydia is the most reported STD/STI in the United States with Gonorrhoea being the 2 nd most common.

What are the symptoms of Chlamydia?

Those infected with Chlamydia often experience a discharge and/or slight pain when urinating. However, in many cases there are no symptoms and the infection is left undetected and is then spread.

How do I catch Chlamydia?

Chlamydia is a bacterial infection typically passed through sexual contact. Using a condom does not guarantee protection as the bacteria can be spread through skin contact with the infected partner such as mouth or fingers.

How do I test for Chlamydia?

Testing for Chlamydia involves testing for the bacteria Chlamydia trachoma antigen. This is done by a specimen gathered by the swab included in the test kit. The specimen is then diluted and placed in the test panel to test for a reaction. If a + reaction occurs 2 red lines will be visible. No blood is required. No lab is required as results are produced by the home test kit itself.

What are the symptoms of Gonorrhoea?

It is possible to not have visible symptoms but many will have pain in the testicles, vagina with a noticeable discharge. Additionally, women may have bleeding between periods and individuals may experience the desire to urinate more frequently.

How do I catch Gonorrhoea?

Gonorrhoea is a bacterial infection typically passed through sexual contact. Using a condom does not guarantee protection as the bacteria can be spread through skin contact with the infected partner such as mouth or fingers.

How do I test for Gonorrhoea?

Testing for Gonorrhoea can be carried out by a rapid test kit that tests for the bacteria antigen. If positive the test kit will show 2 red lines.

What are the symptoms of Syphilis?

Symptoms are in several stages if left undetected and treated. Stage 1 typically involves genital, anal or oral sores. Stage 2 involves a larger rash and then later Syphilis can go on to cause damage to the brain or other organs.

How do I catch Syphilis?

Syphilis is transmitted from person to person by contact with an infected persons syphilitic sore. Typically, this may occur during sexual contact but it can also be transmitted by kissing or other personal contacts.

How do I test for Syphilis?

Testing for syphilis involves testing for the syphilis antibody via a small blood sample collected using the spring-loaded lancet in the test kit pack. This draws literally 1 to 2 drops of blood that are then added to a diluent and the test kit cartridge. A + result will show 2 red lines within moments. No lab is required and the test kit provides everything you need to test.

What are the symptoms of Hepatitis B.?

Hep B is a virus that attacks the liver and so symptoms may include abdominal pain, dark urine, fever, joint pain and fatigue. Left untreated it can cause serious liver damage.

How do I catch Hepatitis B?

Hep B is a viral infection spread through infected blood or body fluids. This is typically through sexual contact with an infected person or by sharing needles or receiving infected blood.

How do I test for Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B infection is identified by antibody testing using a small blood sample. The rapid test kit provides a single use only lancet that will draw 1 to 2 drops of blood for use in the testing device. Diluent is then added and a result is visible within moments.

Do I have to send anything away to the lab?

No, all the rapid test kits contain everything you need to test at home, they include a reactant test cartridge that will react with 2 red lines in the case of detection of the target testing substance. The STD/STI infection results are visible within minutes and nothing else is required to test.

How do the STD test kits work?

A specimen is collected by either a swab or lancet. The specimen is then diluted and added to the test device or added to the test device and then diluted depending on which test you are doing. The liquid will then react with the test strip and produce a negative or positive result or a no test fail result.

How long do the rapid test kits for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Syphilis and Hepatitis B take to show results?

Each infection has its own detection window as they test for either the foreign antigen or the bodies reaction to the infection and the presence of antibodies. This window period aside, when the actual test is carried out results are visible within minutes with no waiting for lab results.

What do I do if I test positive for one of these STDs?

You should contact a health professional either physically or through an online service and explain your test. They can then prescribe the suitable medication for you.

How will I know if the STD test process worked?

The test kits have 3 results. Positive, Negative, No result. No Result is the absence of any red lines. This will indicate that the liquid (body fluid and diluent) was not sufficient to reach the reactant strip and no reaction took place. The kit is then deemed to have failed. This is extremely uncommon if the instructions are correctly followed.