Protecting Your Sexual Health

Any time a person engages in sex or sex-like activity with a partner, there is a chance of contracting a sexually transmitted disease (STD) or sexually transmitted infection (STI). You can contract an STD through oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse and genital touching. There are estimated to be 20 million new sexually transmitted diseases/infections each year in the United States alone. Even if a person looks perfectly healthy, they can still transmit an STI and not even know it because symptoms are not always obvious. Many STIs/STDs are curable if they are caught early. If left untreated, many can cause serious medical conditions. Testing regularly and early detection is extremely important.

Symptoms of Some STIs

Sexually transmitted infections can have a wide range of signs and symptoms, but unfortunately, usually have no symptoms at first. That is why they often go unnoticed and can result in future health problems. Watch for these signs:

  • Sores or bumps on the genitals
  • Painful or burning urination
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
  • Pain during sex
  • Sore, swollen lymph nodes, particularly in the groin area
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Fever
  • A rash over certain parts of the body

Anyone, no matter your age, who is engaged or has been engaged in sex or sex-like activity with a partner(s) should be tested.

Get Tested

TESTING AVAILABLE AT THE PREGNANCY RESOURCE CENTER
There is no charge for your visit with the healthcare provider or for services performed on site at the PRC. Discounted lab fees may apply.  We do not currently bill insurance. If labs are sent out, fees will be due at the time of your appointment. We accept cash, credit, or debit payments. Please see the fee schedule below.

To make your appointment, please text us at 740.591.2273.

WHAT TO EXPECT
Your first visit to the clinic will likely last 60-75 minutes, depending on the need for lab draws or procedures. You can expect to discuss which tests are necessary for you with the medical provider during your appointment at the PRC. You will also receive information about the typical signs/symptoms of STIs and ways to prevent an STI.

It is generally recommended that the following tests be ordered during a typical appointment for STI testing: Chlamydia and Gonorrhea (urine); HIV, syphilis and Hepatitis C (bloodwork); trichomoniasis, bacterial vaginosis, yeast (vaginal swab via pelvic exam for females or urine sample for trichomonas testing in males). If utilizing the lab services through the PRC the total lab cost for a typical STI testing appointment is $52-$56 or $97-$101 for those needing urine trichomonas testing.

Routine screening guidelines for Pap Smears:

  • Women aged 21-29: Pap smear every 3 years
  • Women aged 30-65: Co-testing with pap smear and HPV testing every 5 years

Please note: If you have an abnormal pap result, you will need more frequent screenings and possible further intervention. Your medical provider will discuss this with you.

STI/STD testing Type of test Lab fee
Chlamydia Urine sample $20
Gonorrhea Urine sample Included with Chlamydia test
HIV (bloodwork) Bloodwork $12
HIV (rapid test in office) Oral swab or Fingerstick Free! (For a Limited Time)
Confirmation of positive test for HIV Bloodwork $65
Syphilis Bloodwork $10
Hepatitis C Bloodwork $10
Hepatitis B (sAg and sAb) Bloodwork $20
Hepatitis panel Bloodwork $40
HPV (for women age >30) Pap smear, visual inspection $40
Trichomoniasis Pelvic exam, vaginal swab No charge for female exam;
$45 for urine sample (males)
Herpes (HSV) Visual inspection, swab of a lesion, bloodwork $29
Molluscum Contagiosum Visual inspection Free!
Scabies and lice Visual inspection Free!
     
Other available testing Type of test Lab fee
Bacterial Vaginosis Pelvic exam, vaginal swab Free!
Yeast infection (vaginal candidiasis) Pelvic exam, vaginal swab Free!
UTI (urinary tract infection) Urine sample No charge for urinalysis,
$22 for urine culture if needed
Pap Smear (for women age 21-65) Pelvic exam $25
Pregnancy test Urine sample Free!
Pregnancy test (bloodwork) Blood sample $7
Procedure # of lesions Procedure fee
Cryotherapy 0-3 lesions $10
Cryotherapy 4-9 lesions $20
Cryotherapy 10 or more lesions $30

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How Often Should I be Tested?

The CDC recommends yearly testing for chlamydia and gonorrhea for all sexually active individuals younger than 25 years old and for any sexually active individual with risk factors such as new or multiple sexual partners. Additionally, all individuals should be tested at least once for HIV. Certain populations may benefit from additional screenings for Hepatitis B & C, syphilis or other STIs. You may need to be screened more frequently if you are at higher risk for contracting an STI, such as if you have multiple partners or change partners.  We can discuss your personal risk for STI/STDs at your visit here at the PRC. You can also learn more about your personal risk and what testing is recommended for you at STDWizard.com.

What is the difference between an STI and STD?

In practice, the terms STI and STD are often used interchangeably. However, an STI refers to any sexually transmitted infection while STD generally refers to an STI that has caused permanent damage to a person’s body. Both STIs and STDs are not always accompanied by symptoms. For example, chlamydia is very often asymptomatic in female patients but can cause significant scarring, sometimes leading to infertility.

What can I do to prevent STIs?

You can be exposed to an STI through vaginal, oral, or anal sex or mutual masturbation and sharing of sex toys. The only way to guarantee you do not get an STI is to practice abstinence, i.e. to avoid having sex. There are many benefits to waiting for sex until you are in a long-term, committed relationship with just one partner. This can significantly reduce your risk of an STI. We call this mutual monogamy. This means that you only have sex with your partner and your partner only has sex with you. Make sure to be tested before becoming sexually active if you or your partner has had past partners and take the time needed to know that you are both committed to only each other.

It is important to know, that not all STIs cause symptoms, and an individual may contract an STI and subsequently pass it to a partner without knowing it. The more partners you have (or that your partner has had), the more likely it is that you may be exposed to an STI. Additionally, condoms can reduce the risk of contracting certain STIs. However, they cannot provide 100% protection against any STI/STD, even when used correctly and with every sexual encounter. Schedule an appointment to talk with a provider and find out what testing you need.

How will I receive my test results? What if I need treatment?

You will have access to your lab results via the patient portal. You may also receive a phone call regarding results. Sometimes you will be scheduled for a follow-up visit to discuss the results of any lab work ordered and to provide any necessary treatment. We provide treatment for gonorrhea and chlamydia free of charge on-site here at the PRC. Other diagnoses may require a prescription that will be sent to your pharmacy. Please note that you may need to pay a co-pay for medications picked up at a pharmacy. Some results, such as positive results for HIV or Hepatitis B & C require referral to a specialist for treatment and we will provide this referral. Please also note that Ohio law requires that a positive diagnosis for HIV, syphilis, gonorrhea or chlamydia be reported to the Ohio Department of Health for follow-up.

Is my health information secure?

Yes! We carefully abide by HIPAA law to ensure that all of your health information is protected and secure. Only individuals directly involved in your care will have access to your medical record. We generally do not give results by phone and may ask that you verify your identity if calling. You may request a copy of your medical records at any time. You may also request a copy of our privacy practices at any time.

Does the PRC prescribe birth control?

The PRC can provide you with education and resources regarding the various methods of birth control that are available. However, we do not prescribe birth control. Birth control is taken over a longer period of time and has potential side effects, including the possibility of serious side effects. If you decide that birth control is right for you, then we encourage you to establish with a primary care provider or gynecologist who will monitor you for side effects over time. The PRC provides limited medical care and is not meant to replace the preventative and long-term care obtained from a primary care provider. We also have available resources regarding human fertility and  Fertility Awareness Methods. Even if you are using a prescription birth control, we encourage you to consider our “Focus on Fertility” course to learn more about your fertility and your unique physiology–because the more knowledge you have about your body, the more empowered you are to make the health decisions that are right for you.