Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Trichomonas, Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma, Herpes, Gardnerella, HIV, Syphilis, Hepatitis B and C
Male - this test provides a pot to collect a urine sample at home, which is checked for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma, Trichomonas, Gardnerella and Herpes I/II. A simple finger-prick blood test is used to detect HIV, Syphilis, Hepatitis B and C.
Female - this test provides a swab to collect a vaginal sample at home, which is checked for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma, Trichomonas, Gardnerella and Herpes I/II. A simple finger-prick blood test is used to detect HIV, Syphilis, Hepatitis B and C.
Chlamydia is a very common sexually transmitted infection that often has no symptoms.People frequently don’t realise they have it. It is very easily treated with a course of antibiotics. If left untreated though, it can cause serious complications in the reproductive system, including fertility problems and, in women, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease and increased risk of miscarriage.
Gonorrhoea is also a very common sexually transmitted infection. It often doesn’t have obvious symptoms, but where there are symptoms these normally include pain when urinating and a discharge (from the tip of the penis in men and from the vagina in women). It can be treated with antibiotics, but if left untreated it causes serious health complications, like fertility problems and, in women, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.
Trichomonas is normally symptomless in men, but women often experience a vaginal discharge as a result. It is caused by a tiny germ, called a protozoa.
Mycoplasma affects men and women. It is caused by a tiny parasitic bacterium.
Ureaplasma commonly occurs in the sexually active population. Most people who are infected with it have no problems, but it can cause urethritis (an inflammation of the urethra).
Herpesis a viral infection caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two types of herpes: HSV1 and HSV2. Herpes can affect any mucous membrane but the most common infection sites are the genital area, buttocks, thighs and around the mouth. Herpes can be passed through sexual contact so it is categorised as an STI. Herpes can cause tingling sensation and painful, watery blisters, a general feeling of being unwell, fever, pain or irritation when passing urine. Cold sores around the mouth are caused by the herpes virus. We only advocate testing if you are symptomatic. We can test for herpes from a urine sample. If you have herpes in the genital area then the virus will normally shed in your urine and can be detected, but this would not be our primary recommendation. Where symptoms are present in the form of blisters or sores, we strongly recommend a swab of the area.
Gardnerella is associated with Bacterial Vaginosis and can cause a fishy smelling, greyish coloured vaginal discharge in women and urethritis (an inflammation of the urethra) in men. If you test positive for this, you only need to treat it if you’ve got symptoms.
HIV - The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is transmitted during sex or when sharing needles with an infected person. It is important that you get tested if you believe that you may have caught HIV. Early treatment allows patients to lead an almost normal life with a normal life expectancy. If the infection is not treated early on, however, the virus spreads and damages your immune system. HIV testing is recommended if you have had unprotected sex with a partner who may have it or if you have shared needles on any occasion. In most cases, HIV transmission happens during vaginal or anal sex. However, it is also possible to catch it during oral sex. If you think that you could be HIV positive you should make sure to get tested six weeks after the incident.
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection caused by bacteria. You can catch it during vaginal, anal or oral sex with an infected partner. It is typical for syphilis to cause painless sores during the early stages of infection. If it is left untreated, it can spread to various organs and cause severe complications. Early treatment is essential to prevent syphilis from causing serious damage to your inner organs and brain.
Hepatitis B is a virus that affects the liver. The liver becomes inflamed and cannot function properly. Hepatitis B is contained in blood, semen and vaginal fluids. Patients infected with Hepatitis B can be infected through sexual contact (including oral sex) or coming into contact with infected blood.
Hepatitis C is a blood-borne virus that affects the liver, causing inflammation. This can prevent the liver from functioning properly. Hepatitis C has six different types; these different types are known as genotypes and are numbered 1 - 6. The most common route of infection with Hepatitis C is the sharing of needles between injecting drug users. There is a small risk of infection with sexual activity and some sexual activities carry a higher risk. Around 7% of HIV infected men who have sex with men have had a Hepatitis C co-infection diagnosed.
How does it work?
How do I get treatment?
Our top tips on how to do your STI test
For blood tests:
- Blood flows easier when your hands are warm, so perhaps take the test after a hot shower or bath or hold your hand under warm water for a few minutes.
- Stay standing and keep your arm straight with your hand below your waist
- Aim for the middle of the tip of your finger, not too close to your fingernail
- Push lancet down hard against your finger
- Wipe the first dot of blood away with a clean tissue to stop the blood congealing
- If your finger dries up, wait a while, warm up your hand, use another finger and make sure you press the lancet down hard against your finger.
Tips from people who have completed test kits.
- Relax and be patient and if you’re nervous, ask someone to help you.
- Watch the instruction video and read the instruction leaflet.
- Tying your long hair back can make things easier.
- Remove scarves and jewellery so they can’t get in the way.
- Lay the test kit items and your two tissues on a clean, flat surface.