Question

I contacted my campus health center this week to find out about STD testing. I was informed that blood testing is only done for clymidia and HIV testing, that other STD tests involve a probe through the urethra? Needless to say that doesn't appeal to me......are there any other tests to test for the other STD's BESIDES urethra testing? I hope so

Answer

Blood testing for STD diagnosis is primarily used for HIV, syphilis, and hepatitis. Blood testing for antibodies to herpes is possible, but it doesn't tell you much about the course of symptoms. Fluid from active herpes sores can be collected for culture (this is not a foolproof test). Cultures performed on samples swabbed from the urethra, throat, vagina, and rectum are used to detect gonorrhea and chlamydia. Urine tests have also been developed to detect gonorrhea and chlamydia; ask your health service if they provide this or if a nearby lab could. I am not aware of blood tests that exist for detection of gonorrhea and chlamydia.

The urethral probe is uncomfortable, especially if you are currently experiencing painful symptoms, but it is not as awful as it sounds.

RMK