STIs: Info & Testing
Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI’s) are passed on between people during vaginal, anal and oral sex, as well as through close genital contact with an infected partner. There are 4 main types of STI’s
- Bacterial infections, such as chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis;
- Viral infections such as genital warts, herpes, hepatitis B and HIV;
- Fungal infections such as thrush;
- Parasitic infections such as pubic lice and TV
Often there are no symptoms! Where symptoms are present they may include
In females - vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods or after sex, pain or discomfort during sex, lower abdominal pain and genital lesions.
In males - discharge from the penis, pain or discomfort when passing urine, genital lesions, testicular pain or discomfort.
Many STIs are easily treated but undiagnosed infections can have serious consequences and can lead to long-term complications, such as pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility (not being able to have a baby), and ectopic (tubal) pregnancy.
Where can I be tested?
All sexual health services are confidential, even if you are under 16 (unless there is a concern that you or another person is at risk of harm). If other healthcare services need to be informed, you will be told.
You do not need a referral from your GP just make an appointment or attend a walk in clinic.
Local services and support
- Sexual Health Milton Keynes - for all ages, including under 16s.
- Brook Sexual Health Service - for under 25s, including under 16s
When should I be tested?
- You have a new partner
- You have had unprotected sex
- You have symptoms
- You are worried about your sexual health
- For peace of mind
If you have ever had sex without a condom or a condom has broken during sex you could be at risk of having an STI. Some infections such as warts or herpes can be spread even if you use a condom.
What will the test involve?
The tests might involve:
- a urine sample
- a blood sample
- an examination of your genital area
- swabs from the vagina / cervix / penis / anus / throat
You will be informed which tests you need and why.