Testing: why and when?

Why and when you should get tested for STIs and HIV depends on your particular situation. Getting tested is the only way to know for sure whether or not you have an STI or HIV.

Why should you get tested for STIs and HIV on a regular basis? 

  • Because you have sex with men. STIs and HIV are more common among men who have sex with men.
  • You can get an STI through having sex, even if you fuck with a condom or only give and get blow jobs.
  • STIs and HIV often have no symptoms. You can have HIV or an STI and pass it on to others without realising it.
  • If you have an STI but don't get treated for it, you can get HIV more easily.
  • The earlier you know about it, the better it will be for your health. It is never too late to get tested and received treatment.

When and how often should you get tested for STIs and HIV?

If you have multiple sex partners, get tested for HIV and STIs at least once every half year. That will keep you from walking around with an STI or HIV without knowing it and from passing it on to your partners.

Get tested as soon as possible if you:

  • have physical symptoms that could point to an infection with an STI or HIV.
  • have been notified by a sex partner that he has an STI or HIV. Also if you think he might have had an STI or HIV, get tested as soon as possible.
  • think that you could have HIV. A standard test can show the presence of HIV in your blood after six weeks, but some tests (at some locations) can even show that after just two weeks.

If you have HIV, you have a greater chance of getting STIs. Do you have HIV? Get tested for STIs at least once every half year but preferably every three months. Discuss with your HIV internist the possibility of getting tested for Hepatitis C at least twice a year. That particular STI is quite common among men with HIV.

 

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