Silent STIs

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

Many people rely on symptoms as a first sign that they should get tested for an STI. But this practice is not fool-proof and can perpetuate the spread of infection. In fact, many common STIs don’t manifest any symptoms for weeks or months. Some symptoms take years to show up, and some never have symptoms.

Further, men typically have less severe symptoms than women, or can attribute their symptoms to another factor like eating too much sushi a few nights ago.

STIs with delayed symptoms

Many of the top-spreading STIs are rampant because they easily go unnoticed. Men in particular are at risk for carrying these STIs unknowingly:

  • Chlamydia: often referred to as the “silent” infection, the majority of men do not experience any symptoms from chlamydia. If they do, men develop symptoms several weeks after infection.
  • Herpes: many men with herpes will not develop symptoms, although symptoms may appear 2-12 days after infection. However, the small blisters can be easily attributed to razor burn, bug bites, or ingrown hairs.
  • Gonorrhea: while gonorrhea in the urethra does cause itching and burning, symptoms can take up to two weeks to appear.
  • Syphilis: syphilis is the mocking bird of STIs, as its symptoms mimic many diseases and can take three months to appear. Syphilis can also lay dormant with no symptoms for years.
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): men often show no symptoms from HPV, but some many notice symptoms months or years after infection.
  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV): HIV symptoms appear 2-6 weeks after infection, but the symptoms mimic the flu, which can further delay testing.
  • Hepatitis B (HBV): most men won’t experience symptoms, but flu-like symptoms occur after three months.

Take cautious action

If you’re a man, get tested often, especially when beginning a new sexual relationship. It’s easy to ignore or attribute symptoms to another factor, but this puts you and your partner at risk for further complications.

If you’re a woman, get tested often! Even if you have “the talk” about STIs with your partner, they may be unaware they are infected and in need of treatment—and that you might be, too.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

Call us at 888.249.6716 or Schedule an Appointment today.

A New Reason to get tested for STDs

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

When you go to the doctor, you expect and trust them to know what’s best for you and what tests, if any, need to be run. But new rising evidence shows that doctors aren’t doing enough screenings for STDs.

“We know that doctors are not doing enough screening for STDs,” said David Harvey, executive director at the National Coalition of STD Directors. While funding cutbacks and patient ignorance of risks and symptoms of STDs contributes to the rising rates, Harvey lists the lack of screening as the leading reason STD rates are exploding.

Why aren’t doctors screening for STDs? Primarily, many doctors feel uncomfortable addressing sexual health with their patients, especially if the patient is an adolescent. Studies show that one-third of adolescents don’t discuss sexual health with their doctor at their annual visit. Oftentimes, the doctor and the patient are waiting for the other person to bring up sexual health. If it’s not brought up, patients assume they’re not at risk, or that sexual health isn’t an important issue.

More than simply avoiding an awkward conversation, doctors may have more pressing health concerns to discuss with the patient in the short appointment time, pushing STI questions to the back burner. Other reasons doctors forgo testing include they may not get reimbursed for tests and services, or may not know the latest protocol for treatment.

The bottom line, just because your doctor doesn’t bring up sexual health and STI testing doesn’t mean it isn’t important. Not all STIs have symptoms, but if left untreated, they can result in serious health complications or death.

So what can you do?

Get tested, and get tested often. Take your health into your own hands!

The CDC recommends getting tested once a year or when starting a new sexual relationship. Ask your doctor to test for STIs at every annual visit, but it’s always beneficial to test more frequently.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

Don’t leave your sexual health to chance. Call us at 888.249.6716 or Schedule an Appointment today.

‘Flesh-eating’ STD reported in UK for first time

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

Get ready to get the shivers from this news story! A rare type of STD has been reported in England back in April 2018. The disease is called donovanosis or granuloma inguinale and it causes flesh-eating ulcers to form on the infected person’s genitalia. Though it’s painless, the lesions rapidly spread and get worse, causing heavy bleeding and, if left untreated, cause the flesh around the genitals to literally rot away. It also comes with a hugely increased risk of HIV, which finds its most effective entry point through the bloodstream.

Thankfully, the disease is treatable with antibiotics, though you have to take them for at least 3 weeks, and patients risk relapsing 6-8 months after the intial treatment. Donovanosis is endemic to India, Papua New Guinea, the Caribbean, centeral Australia, and southern Africa. Experts say the infected woman likely had unprotected sex in one of these countries and then traveled back to England.

Like most STDs, donovanosis is transmitted through vaginal, anal, or oral sexual intercourse. The best way to protect yourself is not to have sex with someone who has the lesions visible on their genitals — and beyond that, use a condom. Also, since symptoms can take between a month to a year to appear after infection, you should get tested regularly. Private Testing Center recommends getting tested after every new sexual partner you have, or once a year.

Want to be completely sure that you’re both STD free? Get Tested Today.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Gonorrhea, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Gonorrhea, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

People are having less Sex. So why are STDs Skyrocketing?

2017 was yet another sobering year in the rise of STDs in the United States and across the world. The CDC found that the three major STDs — gonorrhea, syphilis and chlamydia — had reached an all-time high for the 4th straight year. And no end is in sight.

Experts are trying to grapple with what’s causing these alarming statistics, and how to stop them. One piece of data that’s got everyone scratching their heads — It seems reasonable that with the sky-high levels of STDs, Americans should be having more sex than ever before. But that’s not what is happening. A flurry of recent research shows that adults are having LESS sex than they have in decades. What??

The number of Americans who report not having sex at all in the past year rose from 18% twenty years ago, to 22% today. The number of Americans between 18-30 years old who report having sex twice a month or more has dropped from 75% to 66%. And overall, adults look to be having sex 9 times a year fewer on average than they did in the late 1990s. So the big question, since there’s less sex across our nation, why are such a massive amount of people getting STDs?

Gail Bolan, the director of the CDC’s Division of STD Prevention, thinks that’s it’s not so much the number of times that people are having sex, it’s that they are having much riskier sex. A definitive rise in condom-less sex, multiplied by opioid and addition leading to high-risk sexual behaviors.

“Among gay and bisexual men as well as heterosexual couples, there are some behavioral surveys that are suggesting that condom use is on the decline,” she warns. “Additionally, injecting drugs is also associated with higher rates of forced sex, sex in exchange for money or drugs, and sex with other drug users.”

It’s also been shown that intoxication from alcohol or drugs reduce the rate of condom use, because people just forget or deem it too troublesome to wear them. “When people have two drinks, or use opioids, or do meth, that all rational decision-making goes out the door. So drugs are a huge factor in perpetuating the STD rates that we continue to see in our country,” said Perry Halkitis, Dean of Rutgers University School of Public Health.

Another reason that experts fear STD rates are climbing is because funding cuts for public-health centers and STD prevention campaigns have been slashed. Many people believe that STDs are eradicated or aren’t that big a deal — if you catch one just take a pill and you’re cured right? But in actuality STDs have never been a bigger challenge. There are some types (like HIV and Herpes) that can’t be cured, other types (like Syphilis and Hepatitis) you don’t know you are infected until they have caused massive complications to your body. And there are still others (like gonorrhea) who are rapidly developing immunity to all the available treatments that we have and may someday be incurable.

“STIs and STDs aren’t as much of a concern now as they might have been a long time ago, so people might just be having more unprotected sex because they think they’re safer,” said New York City resident, Ajayi Robinson.

All these are massive problems that the public at large just isn’t aware of, partly because there is no funding for information campaigns designed to educate the public.

So what can you do? The CDC recommends adults get tested for STDs once a year or if they start a new sexual relationship. And when you are sexually intimate, use a condom every time.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

STDs and Porn: A Nefarious Link?

It’s no secret that porn has become mainstream entertainment. The statistics are almost unbelievable. Porn sites receive more traffic than Netflix, Amazon, and Twitter put together. A full 30% of all internet bandwidth is porn. And 64% of both men and women, ages 13-24, actively seek out pornography weekly or more often.

So is this sex-saturated, $97 billion a year industry contributing to the meteoric rise in STDs worldwide? Experts say it’s likely.

A recent UK survey found that 44% of males ages 11-16 who regularly consumed pornography, reported that porn gave them ideas about the types of sex they wanted to try.

There’s porn out there of all types, of all fetishes, and a lot of it is just as unrealistic as your average Hollywood blockbuster. But the average age that a child first sees porn is 11. To a young person without much (or any) sexual experience, how are they supposed to gauge what is a faked performance and what is real? They take the images they’ve seen in porn with them into their first sexual experiences.

For example, most porn does not show condom use, and this may contribute to why only 24% of women report using a condom during their last hookup, and only 18% of women said they insisted on using one every single time. Reminder: Condoms are the only way to stop STDs if you have sex — not to mention unplanned pregnancies.

Another major aspect is the issue of consent. Mainstream porn usually jumps right into action within the first couple of minutes, with little-to-no foreplay nor conversations about consent. And there are vast swaths of porn that specialize in sexual violence or rape — glorifying in pressuring or simply overruling the woman’s consent, even if she is only acting/pretending to resist.

Porn pushes and amplifies the message that guys should ask for sex pretty early in a relationship, much earlier than they might ordinarily — and that women should always say yes, regardless of how uncomfortable they might feel.

Measuring the statistical influence porn can cause on the world’s sexual health is extremely difficult. Porn is still a taboo subject in most countries, so even getting people to anonymously self-report their own habits is difficult. But you don’t have to have hard numbers to see there is a connection. What we see in our screens influences the way we have sex, and most of what we’re seeing in mainstream porn is unsafe sex.

Private Testing Center strives to offer affordable and convenient testing to the public in a constant effort to prevent the spread of HIV and STDs. Our goal is to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of HIV and STDs. All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Don’t leave your sexual health to chance. Call us at 888.249.6716 or Schedule an Appointment today.

Drug Resistant Gonorrhea: A Global Challenge

Gonorrhea

Experts around the world are bracing for more super-resistant gonorrhea to hit the worldwide populace. In March 2018, a disturbing report documented yet another case of gonorrhea that was resistant to the antibiotics azithromycin and ceftriaxone — the only remaining recommended treatment for gonorrhea.

The infection was reported in the UK and was immediately pounced upon by tabloids as “Super Gonorrhea”.

Ultimately, the infected man was cured, but only have 3 days of IV treatment with ertapenem, a “crisis” antibiotic only used for severe, life-threatening infections. If this emergency, last-resort treatment becomes the only remaining way to cure some STDs, it would have a huge impact on healthcare.

Medical professionals are extremely concerned that it’s not a matter of “if” gonorrhea becomes resistant the last recommended antibiotic, but “when”. Gonorrhea has been treatable for about 80 years, but it’s proven extremely adept at developing a resistance to each new form of antibiotics we try. It’s run the gamut from sulfonamides, penicillin, tetracycline, spectinomycin, fluoroquinolones, macrolides, and finally cephalosporins. Unlike many other viruses, once Gonorrhea develops a resistance to a certain antibiotic, it doesn’t shed the “memory” of how to resist the previous strains. Instead it holds onto them, stockpiling an ever-growing databank of resistance “knowledge”. So we can’t just switch back to another drug we previously used, we have to develop of new ones.

Of course, scientists are hard at work trying to develop new antibiotics to combat Gonorrhea, and we have some optimism that they’ll eventually be successful. One of the new drugs, solithromycin, has completed phase 3 clinical trials, the last hurdle before it can be granted FDA approval. Two other new drugs, zoliflodacin and gepotidacin, also showed promising results in phase 2 trials. But because of the rigorous testing and certification required for human drugs, any new antibiotics are still a few years away, at best.

If super-resistant Gonorrhea becomes mainstream before we have developed another form of cure, then it could mark the end of the antibiotic era of medicine. And a disease that’s nothing more than a nuisance with proper antibiotics could soon become untreatable, causing significant health problems if not properly addressed in time.

The STD weakens your immune system, making you more vulnerable to other diseases like HIV. It can also cause a burning sensation when urinating, soreness, bleeding, painful bowel movements, painful or swollen testicles in men, and serious complications from infection in women.

So what can be done to prevent the spread of super-resistant STDs? Practice Safe Sex. Get tested often. Private Tested Center strives to offer affordable and convenient testing to the public in a constant effort to prevent the spread of HIV and STDs. Our goal is to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of HIV and STDs. All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

Can you get an STD if your partner is a Virgin?

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

Here at Private Testing Center, we get lots of questions about STDs and Safe Sex, and since our primary goal is to educate, we’re always happy to answer!

One of the questions stems from abstinence: Can you get an STD if your partner is a virgin?

This is where the benefits of abstinence until you are completely ready for sex really pays off. If 2 people without any STDs have sex, there is 0% chance that they’ll get one. STDs are transferred from person to person, they don’t start from nothing. If you are with that person in a long-term monogamous relationship (such as marriage) then you don’t need to worry about catching an STD.

But just because your partner says they are a virgin, that doesn’t always mean they aren’t infected with an STD. If they have ever had unprotected oral sex, there’s a chance you could be at risk. There’s also an unlikely — but possible — chance that your partner could have HIV or an STD from drugs and dirty needles, or the mother having passed it to them during childbirth.

Want to be completely sure that you’re both STD free? Get Tested Today.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Gonorrhea, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Gonorrhea, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

Today’s High Schoolers are having Less Sex, but Why?

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

According to one study, an estimated 90% of U.S. parents prefer that abstinence be the focus of any sex education for their children. Many experts think that abstinence-focused education hurts more than it helps, but for those parents, wishes might be getting granted: A National Youth Risk Behavior Survey showed a drop in high school students who said they’d ever had sex, from 48% to 39%. It also showed a decline in students who said they’d had 4 or more sexual partners, from 15% down to 10%.

The CDC was quick to praise the results, saying they painted a “promising picture about the drug and sexual behaviors” of high school students. But is there an underlying cause to why high schoolers aren’t having as much sex? The short answer is: It’s hard to say. But one thing is clear, says Jesseca Boyer, senior policy manager at the Guttmacher Institute: Abstinence programs aren’t responsible for the drop. “Decades of research shows this approach has no impact on young people delaying sex,” she said.

Dr. Holly Richmond, a sex therapist, argues teenagers are probably still having sex — just not face to face. “Teens are having more online sex, like sexting and Skype sex, which is still having sex, it’s just facilitated through a different lens than teen sex was 10 or 20 years ago,” she said.

Other experts say that it’s more an illusion of the data, caused by young people choosing to have sex later in life and thus outside of the study’s range. A survey over the last 40 years found that today’s teenagers have pushed most “adult” behaviors later in their lives, including drinking, holding down a job, and having sex. The study declares that today’s 18 year old teens are leading roughly the same lives that their parents were at only 15.

One thing is for sure — regardless of when these teens decide to have sex, we know they eventually will. And when they do, it’s of the utmost importance that they do it safely and happily.

That’s where Private Testing Center comes in. Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

Grindr and other Dating Apps are Testing ways to add STD Notifications

Tinder Use on Phone
Tinder Use on Phone
1.5 million people dated on Tinder last week
1.5 million people dated on Tinder last week

STD rates worldwide continue skyrocketing to historically high levels — and many fingers are pointing directly at modern dating apps like Tinder Grindr and OKCupid. For some experts, the correlation between easy, no-strings-attached hookups and rising STDs is so clear that they’ve coined the phrase “Tinder Effect”.

These apps that facilitate casual, anonymous sex aren’t exactly falling over themselves to notify their users about the increased risk of STDs using their platforms. But in a bit of encouraging good news, Grindr and other primarily gay dating apps (demographics where the STD epidemic hits hardest) are testing out ways for STD-positive people to notify their partners using the app.

A form of notification messages concerning STD status is currently in the design and piloting phases — though there is presently no timeline for release. Right now, the app makers seem to be deciding on two different options: A section in the app that links out to existing anonymous notification services… or an in-app messaging system specifically for STDs.

Linking to existing infrastructure is something that’s much easier to put in place, so it looks like that will be the first thing the apps will roll out. “The decision made was, let’s go forth with this system right now, where we have a link to external website that can do that,” said Dan Wohlfeiler, director of the health consortium Building Healthy Online Communities (BHOC). Since 2014, BHOC has brought hook-up app creators together with public health agencies and officials to promote HIV and STD prevention. BHOC participants include Grindr, Adam4Adam, Daddyhunt, and other apps, as well as the National Coalition of STD directors, the AIDS Foundation, and other organizations.

The way these systems would work is ingenius. As long as both users consent, the app would continue to maintain invisible contact with people through the app. People who might be too embarrassed to notify past users of an STD infection themselves, can instead trigger the app to send an anonymous request to all their past partners. “The app could send a notification to say: ‘It’s really important that you get tested for STDs, and here’s a link to a zip code based search engine to find the closest STD clinic near you'” said Dr. Heidi Bauer, the chief of STD control at the California Department of Health.

But this will be a challenging endeavour, especially to build as an industry standard between individual apps that work very differently. And the anonymous aspect of the notifications risks misuse and trolls. Dates or conversations gone wrong could lead to retaliatory false STD notifications. But BHOC will not be deterred by these obstacles and still works to develop a robust system to combat the spread of STDs within the gay community. “We’re trying to use some of the same technologies in communicating with people, and notifying folks with health alerts,” she said. “I think we can’t condemn technology by any stretch. We need to just understand it and better use it.”

Get Tested Regularly. Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Herpes, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable, honest and ethical in the industry. Feel confident knowing that you can speak freely to our counselors about any situation or issue. You will never be judged by anyone at Private Testing Center. We will always make sure the right testing is being done at the right time. With Private Testing Center, you can feel confident knowing that your test results will not only be fast, but accurate as well.

Not just USA; STDs on the Rise in the UK, and their Sex Education isn’t Helping

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

The USA is currently in the middle of a huge STD epidemic, with many STDs reaching infection levels never before seen in history.  But the U.S. is not the only ones.

A report last week by Public Health England shows that syphilis is at levels not seen in Great Britain since 1949.

Similar to the United States own epidemic, the report notes that the infection rates are highest in young people ages 15-24 and men who have sex with men. The report also sheds light on a worrying resurgence in gonorrhea, especially since a drug-resistant and possible incurable version of the disease has surfaced in the UK after a man caught it in Southeast Asia.

Public Health England ended their findings with a call for stronger local and natural prevention programs, along with more sexual health education in secondary schools. But how does the UK’s sexual health services compare to the U.S.?

Great Britain and much of Europe makes sex education mandatory in their schools, but the U.S. continues to struggle with this concept. Only 22 out of 50 states make sex education mandatory. And while the UK and Europe focuses mostly on safe sex practices and education, the U.S. aims mostly for abstinence-only education. According to one study, among 18-19 year olds, 41% knew little to nothing about condoms, and 45% said they knew nothing about contraception.

While abstinence is unquestionably the best way to prevent STD transmission (not to mention unplanned pregnancies), it does nothing for those young people who do want to be sexually promiscuous. And the U.S. is paying the price for this lack of education, with the highest rates of both sexually transmitted diseases and teenage pregnancies among all industrialized countries.

However, even with the UK’s much more stringent sex education program, they aren’t too far behind the U.S. with their STD infection rates. So what gives?

Some experts are pointing to other European leaders, like Holland, where sex education is more than just physical do’s and don’ts, and instead is presented as relationship education — of which sex is a component.

Others think that the curriculum being used is too outdated, and does not reflect the dangers faced by young people today. The current curriculum was drafted in 2000 and contains little to nothing about cyber-bullying, sexting, or LGBT issues.

The UK is currently in the middle of grappling how to deal with this crisis, and it remains to be seen whether they can clamp down on the worldwide epidemic of STDs.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

3 Things you should know before getting an STD Test

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

We’re really glad you’re checking up on this article, but we want to be crystal clear right off the bat. If you’re sexually active and not in a monogamous relationship (only seeing one person), then you need to get screened. Full stop. No exceptions. Even if you’re not experiencing any symptoms.

“The majority of STDs—be it gonorrhea, chlamydia, or herpes—tend to be asymptomatic, meaning they don’t cause symptoms,” explains Khalil Ghanem, associate professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University. “So a majority of people who have these STDs don’t know they have them.”

1) Know the difference between “Testing” and “Screening”
Though the terms are used interchangeably, a screening is what happens when you’re not showing symptoms but want to get tested anyways. A screening usually checks for a large range of STDs and eliminates them all in one result, so you can have peace of mind about your sexual health. Testing is when you ARE showing some symptoms and you want to check for one or two particular diseases. There’s a difference between the two procedures. Private Testing Center has counselors that can help you determine what type of test to order. Our counselors are non-judgemental and super friendly and supportive, plus your conversation is strictly confidential. So don’t be afraid to go into detail about your sexual habits — any information you give us allow us to determine the best test for you. Call us today at 888.249.6716.

2) Private Testing Center’s testing methods aren’t painful or invasive. Urethra swabs? Miss me with that junk. All our testing is performed with either blood or urine. You get a little bit of blood drawn or you pee in a little cup and THAT’S IT. It’s never been easier, quicker or more convenient to get the answers you deserve.

3) You don’t have to do anything before the screening, and your results come back quickly. You may think you have to fast before your test, don’t drink, come first thing in the morning, or any number of other things that medical tests sometimes make you do. These are all incorrect. You live your normal day and show up whenever you like. The ONE exception is if you need a urine test, you just need to avoid peeing for about 2 hours before the test. That’s easy enough, right?

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Herpes, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable, honest and ethical in the industry. Feel confident knowing that you can speak freely to our counselors about any situation or issue. You will never be judged by anyone at Private Testing Center. We will always make sure the right testing is being done at the right time. With Private Testing Center, you can feel confident knowing that your test results will not only be fast, but accurate as well.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

What Happens if you don’t get your STD Treated?

Chlamydia
The Herpes Simplex Virus
Liver scarring caused by Hepatitis B

Even though STD tramsmission rates are at an all-time high in the United States, most STDs have treatments and many have cures. But the problem is that for many people, they think things are fine as long as they’re not having symptoms that bother them. They don’t get tested or they just assume the problem will go away.

It won’t. And the consequences for not getting tested, and treating an STD are almost always bad. In many cases, they are dire.

Let’s look at some scary medical stuff that happens if you don’t cure some common STDs:

Gonorreah and Chlamydia

Both of these nasty Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) are caused by bacteria that is spread by vaginal, anal and oral sex. The most common immediate symptom is an infection in your urinary tract which results in a painful, burning feeling when you pee. But that’s not a guaranteed symptom, some people become infected but have no symptoms at all.

If you leave these diseases untreated, then they can lead to more serious infections. In men, this can result in infections in your testes and sometimes even infertility. In women, the diseases can progress to pelvic inflammatory disease, which is an infection in the ovaries and it can lead to infertility. In both men and women, Gonorrhea can spread to your joints and cause damage and pain.

The ridiculous thing is, both these diseases are curable with simple antibiotics. There is NO REASON to run the risk. The CDC recommends that you get tested for both of these diseases annually.

Herpes

There are two types of Herpes viruses, but they both work the same. They’re spread by vaginal, anal and oral sex, as well as physical contact with a herpes sore. Herpes causes sores around your genitals that look like small pimples or blisters. Over the course of 2-4 weeks, they eventually crust over and scab, like small cut.

If left untreated, these outbreaks can continue to get worse. Besides that, herpes is extremely infectious and you’ll be continuing to propagate the STD epidemic by giving the virus to your partners.

Herpes has no cure, but there are medications to supress outbreaks and drastically lower the chance you’ll infect someone else. Don’t leave this to chance.

Hepatitis

Hepatitis B, C are different variants of a seriously damaging virus that attacks your liver. It’s been called a “silent epidemic” because people can be infected for 30 or more years and have no idea they have it. 80% of people with the disease have no symptoms. The people that do have symptoms often confuse them with something else because the symptoms are very general like fatigue, vomiting, stomach trouble, or dark-colored urine.

Hepatitis C is a leading cause of liver transplants, so that should tell you everything you need to know about what happens if you don’t get this disease treated. Once the virus has been allowed to attack your liver for many years, the damage becomes irreversible.

There are treatments available and each year brings new breakthroughs in their efficiency and minimizing their side effects. But the only way to get these treatments and get the answers about your sexual health is to get tested.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Gonorrhea, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Gonorrhea, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

Online Dating Tips to Avoid STDs

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

Online Dating has been around pretty much as long as the internet itself. But only in the last few years has the ease and efficiency of meeting someone online been improved by leaps and bounds. Apps like Tinder and Grindr match you with thousands of people in your city. Tens of millions of people meet through these apps every year, and many of those “hook up”.

But there’s a dark side to meeting someone new and interesting as often as you like. It’s never been easier to become infected with one or more STDs. And the statistics show that very few people talk about the risk of STDs before becoming intimate.

This is a big reason the United States has the highest rate of STDs in comparison to other countries, and why 62% of new infections are under the age of 25.

But how can you know for sure that a match has an STD or not? Are all online dating apps “bad”? Can you still protect yourself even if you have lots of sex? Yes you can. We’ve put together three simple tips that you can use when meeting someone.

Tip #1: Use a Condom. Yep, you’ve heard it a million times before. But you’ve heard it because it works. Proper condom use should protect you from Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Hepatitis, and HIV. And it lowers the chance you catch the others, sometimes by up to 70%.

If you’re serious about protection, you need to wear a condom during every sex act, even oral sex. You may have heard oral sex is the safest kind of sex — but you can still get gonorrhea, chlamydia, HPV, and herpes from unprotected oral sex.

Tip #2: Ask your partner first. We get it, it’s kindof an awkward conversation to have. Your partner might even get offended that you don’t trust them. But think about it — if dinner doesn’t go well and you decline to have sex with them later, they have to respect your wishes, right? So shouldn’t you demand the same respect when it comes to your sexual health?

Just a simple text: “Are you clean?” is all it takes. And if something seems off, don’t be afraid to ask for their results on paper. Of course, you should never ask your partner about their sexual health if you haven’t been tested or aren’t ready to be honest yourself. They deserve clear answers just as much as you do.

Tip #3: Avoid sketchy people. This one’s tricky to list as bullet points. But you know that gut feeling, that natural intuition? Trust that. If something isn’t adding up on your date — if your partner doesn’t seem entirely honest or trustworthy, or if the vibe doesn’t feel quite right — don’t take things to the next level. If your match is a sketchy person, that means they’ve probably slept with OTHER sketchy people. Imagine 50 other seedy partners giving you a taste of whatever they have.

We get it, in the heat of the monent it can be difficult to back out of sexual pleasure. But when the cloud of passion has faded, you’re going to be thanking yourself.

If you want a 100% solution, there’s only one: Don’t have sex. However, with proper condom use, open and honest communication, and a smart choice of partners, you can DRAMATICALLY reduce your risk of STD infection.

And never forget to GET TESTED REGULARLY! Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

One App may Eliminate the Dreaded ‘STD’ Dating Question

Tinder Use on Phone
Tinder Use on Phone
1.5 million people dated on Tinder last week
1.5 million people dated on Tinder last week

With the explosion of Tinder, E-Harmony, OKCupid and other online dating apps, it’s easier than ever to find love in your city. Thanks to Tinder alone, 1.5 million people dated last week. But with the ease and frequency of modern dating and the casual, anonymous sex that comes with it, there’s not always time for conversations about important topics, like STDs.

“It goes like this: ‘Ummmm, do you have any STDS?'” says Oksana Wright, co-founder of the Social Health Registry app. “Many people don’t even bring up the question because of how awkward it actually is.”

This so-called “Tinder Effect” is part of the reason that Syphilis, Gonorrhea, and HIV have rocketed to all-time highs in the United States. But Wright is developing an app that she hopes will be a game-changer for this epidemic.

The Social Health Registry (SHR) app allows a user to register and then upload their current medical status. This confidential information would not be shared with anyone else, however the app would calculate and award a “badge” to the user, based on how many days since their last STD test and whether they are clean or not.

Right now, the app is in early stages of development. Wright wants to partner with STD Testing Laboratories so they can upload test results to the app without the user having to be bothered to self-report. She also wants to integrate the database into online dating apps, so when you match with someone it also displays their SHR badge in their profile.

This system should allow both dating individuals to skip the awkward “do you have STDs?” question, and judge for themselves whether that person’s sexual history changes whether they would go on a date or hook up.

Getting Tested for STDs has never been easier or more affordable. Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

3 Common STDs in Danger of Becoming Incurable

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

It’s almost like something out of a sci-fi movie. Superbugs? Unbeatable Bacteria? Incurable STDs? Unfortunately, we have come dangerously close to this reality.

It’s happening all over medicine and it’s a simple product of evolution, helped along by decades of antibiotics overuse. The last time you had to take some antibiotics, you may have heard your doctor warn you to take the WHOLE bottle, even if you get better before it’s empty. Why is that? Because if you don’t, there’s a chance that some of the viruses or bacteria will survive the assault. Not enough of them to make you sick again, but enough to figure out how to protect themselves from that antibiotic. With enough survivors, and through random changes in their genetic code, the organisms can even become IMMUNE to that type of antibiotic. This phenomenon is called “RESISTANCE”.

There are three common STDs that are in the final stages of resistance: Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Syphilis. All three diseases are very curable right now, but one day they might not be.

Gonorrhea used to be curable with basically any type of antibiotic, including penecillin. However, over time, it has developed immunity to 6 different classes of antibiotics. It can only be killed now with a single type. And we’re now starting to see it becoming tougher against that last remaining option. If there is ever a strain that becomes immune, we will have a “Superbug”, an incurable disease. With 820,000 new gonorrhea infections each year in the U.S., it’s a pretty scary prospect.

The same thing is happening to chlamydia and syphilis, though thankfully they are not as far down the resistance pathway as gonorrhea.

So what can be done to help prevent this? There are two main things. First, you can follow your doctors instructions exactly, and take the FULL DOSE of your antibiotics. This will completely wipe out the infection and there will be no survivors to become resistant to the treatments. Second (and more importantly) you can do your part to stop the STD epidemic that is ravaging the United States by GETTING TESTED REGULARLY.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Gonorrhea, HIV and other STDs.

Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Gonorrhea, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers.

Syphilis: Once Almost Exterminated, now a Nationwide Crisis

Syphilis Sores
Syphilis Sores
Syphilis

Syphilis, or “the great pox” is an ancient disease that’s been ravaging humanity since medieval times. Up until the 1900’s, there was no effective treatment for it. However, with the advent of penecillin, the disease was swiftly contained and is now only a footnote in medical history books.

At least, that’s what aspiring medical students in the 80’s and 90’s were told. With just 6000 cases of syphilis reported in 2000, the CDC thought that the disease’s total extinction was within our reach. Even as recent as 10 years ago, most medical experts considered Syphilis to be “on the ropes” as a disease.

But instead, this very curable sexually transmitted disease has come roaring back into the spotlight. Between 2014 and 2015, rates of syphilis increased by over 17%. Today, new Syphilis infections are at the highest levels they’ve been in over 20 years, with 23,872 new cases reported. The rates have increased in every region, a majority of age groups, and almost every ethnicity. And in the United States we’ve seen a rise in congenital syphilis — something even developing countries have been able to eliminate.

What is the reason for this meteoric rise? And why have we been unsuccessful at completely eradicating this disease, even though we’ve been able to cure it for over 100 years?

Public Health Budget Cuts

One frequently cited reason is sub-par funding for public health budgets. The CDC has had more than a billion dollars cut out of its budget since 2005. And since 2008, more than 44,000 jobs have been cut from local health departments. “This is a failure of the healthcare system” said Gail Bolan, CDC director of STD Prevention. “Our public health infrastructure is at the point of breaking” said Bill Smith, the executive director of the National Coalition of STD Directors.

Social Media & Dating Apps

Health experts think that social media is playing a strong role in the spread of STDs of all kinds, including syphilis. Apps like Tinder and Grindr make it very easy to have anonymous sexual encounters, or only know the person through a profile photo and a short description. So when someone using these apps tests positive for an STD, it becomes very difficult to track down their previous partners and let them know they are at risk.

Highly Contagious with Subtle Symptoms

Syphilis is transmissable through almost every sexual means, including oral, vaginal, and anal sex. But it also presents with a unique and unpredictable set of symptoms, or even no noticeable symptoms at all. This one-two punch makes it both highly contagious and hard to diagnose without an STD Test.

Syphilis is a bacterial infection that is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact with pus-filled sores. Within the first few weeks after being infected, sores will usually appear in the location they are infected. So they could be in your mouth, your genitals, or your anus. There might be only one sore, or a few. The sores are painless, so if you don’t notice them, you won’t know they are even there. If a partner rubs against these sores, they are at a high risk for infection of syphilis themselves. The sores will heal after a month or so. This is the first stage of syphilis.

A few weeks after healing, the second stage begins. A rash appears, usually starting on your torso, but it can expand to cover your whole body. The rash doesn’t usually itch, but it can produce sores in your mouth or genitals. Some people also experience other symptoms like fever, sore throat, or ache-y muscles, but not everyone does. The second stage goes away after a few weeks, or can continue sporadically for up to a year.

If not treated by this point, Syphilis begins to earn its ominous reputation. It actually seems to go away on its own. Sometimes nothing further happens for years. But in 15-30 percent of people, the third and final stage of syphilis comes back full force. Tertiary syphilis damages your brain, heart, bones, eyes, nerves, joints and blood vessels. Visual impairments, hearing loss, stroke, and even death are all common results. In pregnant women, it can cause stillbirths, and significant health problems in babies that survive.

How can I tell if I have Syphilis?

Because Syphilis has so many different symptoms, the only way to know for sure is to get an STD test. Private Testing Center offers fast, affordable and accurate STD testing at one of our 1200 locations across the nation.

If you do test positive for Syphilis, don’t worry! There is a simple cure.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Herpes, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable, honest and ethical in the industry. Feel confident knowing that you can speak freely to our counselors about any situation or issue. You will never be judged by anyone at Private Testing Center. We will always make sure the right testing is being done at the right time. With Private Testing Center, you can feel confident knowing that your test results will not only be fast, but accurate as well.

STD rates continue to rise in 2017

Chlamydia
Syphilis
Gonorrhea

The highest ever number of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis cases were recorded last year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

According to their data, there were 2 million overall infections.

  • The overwhelming amount of these (1.6 million) were chlamydia, and 800,000 of those were in young women.
  • Spyhilis rates grew 18% overall, with a 36% increase in women becoming infected and a 28% increase in babies born with syphilis. Many of the babies die shortly after birth or have a range of problems like enlarged liver, nervous system defects, blindness or deafness, seizures or developmental delays.
  • Gonorrhea also experienced a 22% increase for men. Gonorrhea is especially concerning to experts because it’s becoming resistant to the only two antibiotics used to treat it. Unless something changes or a new method is found for treatment, gonorrhea could soon be the latest STD to become incurable.

These are shockingly high statistics. The United States has the highest STD rates of any Western industrialized country in the world. The infection rates are increasing across the board, with all populations and demographics. But sadly, there are disporportionaly impacted communities. Southern States have taken the brunt of the rate explosion. Young People between the ages of 15-24 are the biggest newly infected demographic. Men who have sex with men have the highest risk to contract syphilis, gonorrhea and HIV.

Experts are struggling to explain these skyrocketing statistics, and come up with a plan to stop them. They’ve laid out the three biggest causes, and their solutions.

  1. Cuts to Public Health Funding.  Public health in the U.S. is historically underfunded. There are 50,000 fewer health jobs since 2008, and many government-run STD clinics have reduced their hours or shut down. Private Testing Center strives to reverse this trend with STD education campaigns and over 1200 affordable, convenient, and painless STD testing facilities nationwide.
  2. Lack of Fear.  Public Schools in the 90’s bombarded students with a hard-hitting HIV/AIDs prevention campaign. “Silence = Death” was the tagline. There were photos of funerals and people mourning. If you don’t use a condom, you were basically signing your own death warrant from AIDs. But nowadays, HIV is manageable via medication, and many other STDs are cureable with antibiotics. “It’s harder to put the fear of God in young people now that drugs can allow you to have unprotected sex and not pass on HIV, or if you do get it just take a pill every day and live a mostly normal life.” Says Josh Bloom of the American Council on Science and Health. But even though it might seem like it, STDs are not to be trifled with. Undiagnosed, many can cause serious health issues or even death. You need to be tested regularly and have honest conversations with your partners.
  3. The Rise of Dating Apps and Anonymous Hookups.  Dating apps like Tinder and Grindr have made sex more readily available then at any other time in human history. As one young man explained it, “You could talk to two or three girls at a bar, or you can swipe a couple hundred girls a day on Tinder. If you set up two or three Tinder dates a week and sleep with most of them, that’s 100 girls you can sleep with in a year!” But having sex with more people increases the chance of infection to an STD. And worse still, if you do become infected, it’s nearly impossible to track down all your past partners from the app and warn them to get tested. To help combat the risks associated with online dating, talk to your partners about their sexual health history before you become intimate, and use protection every time you have sex.

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs.Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Herpes, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable, honest and ethical in the industry. Feel confident knowing that you can speak freely to our counselors about any situation or issue. You will never be judged by anyone at Private Testing Center. We will always make sure the right testing is being done at the right time. With Private Testing Center, you can feel confident knowing that your test results will not only be fast, but accurate as well.

Is Tinder helping spread STDs?

50 Million People use Tinder Every Day
1.5 Million People went on Tinder Dates Last Week
  • 50 million people use Tinder every month

  • There are 1 billion swipes every day

  • 12 million matches are made each day

  • 1.5 million people went on Tinder dates last week

STD infection rates are skyrocketing nationwide. Each year, new all time highs are reached for Syphilis, Gonorrhea, HIV and other diseases. And tragically, the impact is felt most by young people between the ages of 15 and 24.

Experts are struggling with how to interpret these numbers. Some are suggesting that budget cuts are to blame. Others think we’re simply finding more cases that would otherwise have gone undiagnosed.

But there are a growing number of studies that confirm a third reason: The rise of of Anonymous Dating Apps like Tinder, Grindr, and OKCupid. Some experts have coined the phrase “Tinder Effect”.

1.5 million people dated last week thanks to Tinder. These apps make connecting with people faster and more efficient than ever before. As one young man described it, “You could talk to two or three girls at a bar and pick the best one, or you can swipe a couple hundred people a day. You set up two or three Tinder dates a week, and if you sleep with most of them, you could rack up 100 girls you’ve slept with in a year!”

But the problem with casual, anonymous sex via these apps strikes on two fronts:

  1. Having sex with more people means you’re more likely to become infected with an STD.

  2. If you find out you’re infected, it’s very hard to track down the people you have met through the app and let them know to get tested.

Tinder itself vehemently denies that it helps spread STDs, even going as far as ordering the takedown of billboards and bus ads warning Tinder users to get tested for STDs. They’ve also taken some steps to make it easier to get tested, such as adding an STD Testing Location Tracker to their app. But they’ve shown reluctance to do more than this.

“Dating Apps don’t want to be associated with STDs. And no one has any authority to require or mandate that these sites mitigate the consequences of their businesses” said Jeffrey Klausner, a professor of medicine and STD researcher at UCLA.

So when it comes to Dating Apps, the burden falls on you to protect yourself from becoming infected, or infecting others. Here’s some quick tips on how to do that:

  1. Use protection every time you have sex. Although a condom won’t protect you from every disease, it’s the first line of defense, and it’s been proven to cut infection rates dramatically. Even if you use another method to prevent pregnancy, like birth control or an IUD, you should still use a condom to protect yourself against the risk of infection from an STD.
  2. Talk to your partners to minimize risk. The most important aspect of any sexual encounter is communication. If you both care about each other’s sexual health, you won’t have a problem gently breaching this topic.
  3. Get Tested Regularly. Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs.Our primary goal is to to educate people about the risks associated with unprotected sexual activity and also the importance routine screenings play in prevention and treatment of Herpes, HIV and STDs.

All of our testing is performed through the blood and urine. No pelvic exams, painful swabs or embarrassing visual exams are necessary, as blood and urine testing is the most accurate.

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable, honest and ethical in the industry. Feel confident knowing that you can speak freely to our counselors about any situation or issue. You will never be judged by anyone at Private Testing Center. We will always make sure the right testing is being done at the right time. With Private Testing Center, you can feel confident knowing that your test results will not only be fast, but accurate as well.

How Accurate is a Herpes Urine Test?

The Herpes Simplex Virus
Herpes HSV Lesions
Antibodies Attacking a Virus
Antibodies Attacking a Virus

Fresh from the mailbag, we have a question about a Herpes Urine Test. How accurate is it? Our answer: Not accurate enough. Read on for our reasons.

Genital Herpes is a common Sexually Transmitted Disease that is easily given to others and, sadly, doesn’t yet have a cure. You get herpes by having vaginal, oral or anal sex with someone who already has it. One reason the disease spreads so easily is you don’t have to have outward symptoms to spread the disease, so there’s a great many people who are infected and don’t even know it.

As many as 4-5 times a year, the virus attacks below the surface of your skin, creating LESIONS or SORES. These sores are difficult to attribute to Herpes alone, they also look very close to insect bites, ingrown hairs or a rash. Some people don’t even have sores – yet they can still be infected.

Your body beats the virus back from its attack, but it’s never able to kill it completely. Instead, the virus retreats to a cluster of nerves at the base of your spine and gathers its strength again before launching another attack. This is why Herpes has no cure, because any medication strong enough to kill the virus would also damage the nerves at the base of your spine!

Testing for Herpes is a complicated test, especially when you have no other symptoms. However, Private Testing Center favors blood tests for Herpes, with an accuracy rate of 99%. Urine tests for Herpes do exist, but it’s much harder to get an accurate result. You don’t want to leave your sexual health to chance… one of the worst things that can happen is being told you don’t have Herpes when you do, and you continue to inadvertently infect your partners!

Private Testing Center offers affordable and convenient testing, in a constant effort to prevent the spread of Herpes, HIV and other STDs. Same Day appointments are available and with over 1500 locations nationwide, your closest location is only a short drive away. We understand your privacy is of the utmost importance and we assure confidentiality for every one of our customers. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

How Accurate is a Herpes Blood Test After 6 weeks?

The Herpes Simplex Virus
Herpes HSV Lesions
Antibodies Attacking a Virus
Antibodies Attacking a Virus

People ask us lots of questions about STDs, and we’re always happy to provide answers about this sensitive topic. One thing we’ve been asked is “How Accurate is a Herpes Blood Test After 6 weeks?” The answer is “CONCLUSIVELY ACCURATE”, as long as you get the right test!

Genital Herpes is a nasty virus that comes in two different types, HSV-1 and HSV-2. They both have the same plan of attack: As many as 4-5 times each year, they attack healthy cells on your skin, hacking into them and forcing them to create clones of the Herpes virus — tens of thousands of them. The cells are forced to work so hard that they eventually die, and when enough of them die, it leads to sores or lesions on the surface of your skin.

These sores are hard to identify as herpes just by looking at them. They’re often mistaken for pimples, bug bites, or a rash. Anyone else that touches these lesions has a chance of contracting Herpes. Since they often appear on your thighs or buttocks, simply using a condom won’t eliminate the risk. You don’t even have to have visible symptoms to transmit Herpes to someone else.

The only way to know for sure that you have Herpes is to GET TESTED!

Private Testing Center is the most convenient and affordable provider of same-day Herpes and STD Testing. We can do two types of Herpes tests, and it’s very important that you pick the right one.

IgG Test – This test is accurate AFTER 3 weeks, and conclusive after 6 weeks and beyond.

We draw a small sample of your blood for this test, and check for the presence of ANTIBODIES. Antibodies are special soldiers that your body manufactures to fight a virus or a sickness. There’s a different type of antibody for every sickness you might get in your life, everything from Chicken Pox to the Flu. If the blood test reveals the presence of Herpes antibodies, it means your body is fighting the Herpes virus and you are infected. If we don’t see Herpes antibodies, it means you don’t have Herpes.

IgM Test – This test is accurate between 10 days and 4 weeks.

This is a special “early warning” test you can get to detect Herpes as soon as possible. We draw a small amount of your blood for this test and check it for a certain type of antibody. This antibody is the “front line soldier” and holds back an infection while your body focuses on crafting the more specialized antibodies that come later. This front line soldier retreats after 4 weeks, as the main antibody army is finished. So this test WILL NOT WORK if it’s been over a month since your contact of concern.

Not sure which test to get? We have knowledgeable and compassionate counselors that can help you, no judging. Don’t leave your health to chance! Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

STD Check at Home

There’s a lot of searches out there — and a few services — for STD Checks and Testing Kits that you can do at home. Sounds like a great idea, right? What’s more private and more convenient then your own house!

Private Testing Center does not offer in-home testing kits for STDs, and we have a really good reason. Give us a few moments to show why our testing can be just as convenient and private, but avoids the pitfalls of in-home testing.

STDs are not something you want to leave to Chance

There are terms called “False Positive” and “False Negative“. That means your test comes back showing you have an STD but you actually don’t — or shows that you don’t, but you actually are infected. Both of these situations are very bad.

With an in-home testing kit, if you don’t follow the directions exactly, you will contaminate the sample and increase your chances of a False Positive or a False Negative.

With Private Testing Center, we have a network of 1500+ labs nationwide. Each and every test is administered by a medical professional, meaning it will always be done properly, in a sterilized environment, for the MOST ACCURATE RESULT.

Some In-Home Test Kits are Scams

Beware of “Instant” STD Test Kits. These are sold illegally, without the approval of the FDA or the U.S. Government. They have very poor levels of accuracy.

Lab Testing has Much Faster Results

Since your test is conducted in the lab itself, your results are available in 1-3 business days. With many of these kits, it can take weeks or even months to get your results back.

Lab Testing is very Convenient & Private

Private Testing Center offers same-day appointments, with as little as 15 minutes before your appointment is on the books. In addition, the average lab visit takes less than 30 minutes. Finally, we keep your information strictly confidential. All these things make our tests just as comparable to your home.

Our Network of Counselors & Professionals

Our counselors are the most knowledgeable and ethical in the industry. We will listen to your story without any judgement, and advise you on the best test to take. We can give you easy tips so that you’ll get the fastest, most accurate result.

None of this is available with in-home testing, you are on your own. We want to help you. Call 888.248.9002, or Schedule Your Test Online.

Do STD Tests show up on your Medical Record?

Do STD Tests show up on your Medical Record?

This is a great question, and the answer for all our tests is a firm “NO“. Private Testing Center puts a huge emphasis on protecting your privacy. Here’s some of the ways we ensure your testing is discreet:

All Our STD Tests are Confidential

The only personal information we collect from you is your name and date-of-birth. This is only so that we can ensure we match you to the correct appointment slot in the lab. We DO NOT require your address, social security or any other information.

Our Tests do not appear on your Medical Record

All of PTC’s STD Tests do not appear on your Medical Record. While this is our policy, some other STD Testing Providers do not share this policy! If privacy is a concern, please verify that whomever you choose, your test will not appear on your medical record.

It is for this reason that we do not accept insurance. If we submit your claim to the insurance companies, they will become aware you took the test and it will appear on your record, and sometimes insurance companies will raise your rates if you take certain tests or take what they deem “too many”.

We offer Several Options for Discreet Payment

If you pay with a credit or debit card, a charge will appear on your statement from “Private Testing Center, Inc.” However, for a more discreet option, we also accept payments from pre-paid gift cards. This is an option often used by our customers.

These cards are untraceable and are sold at all major retailers like Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, Target and others. Sometimes the cards only come in increments of $25, $50, $100 etc., so purchasing more than one might be necessary. In many cases though, you can load a custom amount onto the card.

We are unable to accept cash as payment.

We Provide your Results Discreetly

Our preferred method for telling your results is verbally, over the phone. We can call you as soon as the results are ready, or if you’d prefer not to give us your phone number, you can call us at 888.248.9002. Another option is we can email, or mail, your results.

All these policies are built with your privacy and protection in mind. Private Testing Center will collect as little personal information as possible, and we’ll always keep this info confidential and discreet. Call us at 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test Online.

Can Dormant Herpes be Detected?

The Herpes Simplex Virus
Herpes HSV Lesions
Antibodies Attacking a Virus
Antibodies Attacking a Virus

One common question we get asked is “Can Dormant Herpes Be Detected?” The answer is YES IT CAN, as long as you get the right test!

Genital herpes is a virus that comes in two types, but both types act the same. As many as 4-5 times a year, the virus attacks your skin and causes an “outbreak” of sores, blisters or small pimples.

These take 2-4 weeks to fully heal. If someone else touches the sores, they can also become infected with Herpes. Even though you can see something is wrong with your body, these sores are often mistaken for other skin conditions like insect bites or a rash.

Eventually your body beats back the attack, but then the Herpes virus pulls a trick. It retreats back to the base of your spine, where it slowly builds up strength again, but also causes no trouble. This is called the “Dormant” phase.

During the “Dormant” phase, you have absolutely no symptoms, so it may seem tough to test whether you are infected. But here at Private Testing Center, we have a super accurate test that does just that.

You see, even though there’s no outward sign that you have Herpes, your body still knows it’s infected. It constantly battles it with special ANTIBODIES. These are tiny assassins that ONLY kill the Herpes virus.

With just one 15 minute visit, Private Testing Center will draw a tiny amount of your blood, and check to see if any of these antibodies show up. If you aren’t infected with Herpes, you won’t have any Herpes antibodies in your blood. If you ARE infected, it doesn’t matter if the Herpes is Dormant or Active, we will see the antibodies. You can take the test 3 weeks after your last contact of concern, and it’s super accurate.

Sadly, there is no cure for Herpes, as any medicine strong enough to kill the virus would also damage the nerves at the base of your spine. However, with a proper diagnosis and the right medicine, you can shorten or even prevent outbreaks, and also not pass it onto other people you care about. That’s worth getting tested for.

Don’t leave your health to chance! Private Testing Center offers affordable, same-day testing for all major STDs, including Herpes, HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrea and more. We keep all your info strictly confidential, and we’re here for counseling and advice if you need it. Call 888.248.9002 or Schedule Your Test today.

Sex and HIV: Is It Ever Safe?

A romantic relationship can be drastically affected if one person is diagnosed with HIV or AIDS. While there’s much more to most couples’ relationships than sex, it’s still an important part of being together. And by putting HIV prevention measures in place, it’s possible to stay well and maintain a sex life.

Finding safe methods of sexual intimacy is an important step for you and your partner after an HIV diagnosis, as is determining whether you want to try to have children.

Can Sex Be Safe With HIV?

It’s natural for couples to be afraid of having sex after an HIV diagnosis. But understanding the risks involved with certain kinds of sexual activity, and knowing about methods of HIV prevention, can help alleviate these fears.

When a person infected with HIV or AIDS has sexual intercourse of any kind, there is a risk of infecting the healthy partner — whether or not you use condoms. Couples need to be aware of which sexual activities put them at risk, and what they can do to minimize that risk.

“HIV can be transmitted through vaginal sex, anal sex, and it’s likely that it’s transmitted through oral sex as well. So all of these would carry a risk of transmitting HIV to the HIV infected person’s partner,” says Jennifer A. Shuford, MD, MPH, director of applied science at the Medical Institute for Sexual Health in Austin, Tex.

Couples can reduce (but not completely eliminate) the risk of transmitting HIV to the healthy individual through proper, consistent condom use.

“When you use condoms for vaginal intercourse, it reduces the risk of transmission of HIV by 85 to 90 percent,” says Dr. Shuford. However, “the risk is still there even when a condom is used correctly and consistently.”

What Are the Chances of Getting HIV?

For each act of intercourse, the odds are actually only around 1 in 1,000 that the healthy partner will contract HIV, according to Shuford. However, when you add that up over weeks, months, and years, a person in a relationship with an HIV-infected partner is at much higher risk. “The risk is additive over time and it’s important that people realize that condom use needs to occur every time,” Shuford adds.

The exact level of risk of the uninfected partner contracting HIV depends on several factors, including how well the infected partner’s HIV is being managed. Shuford notes that people who aren’t taking medication for their HIV will have higher concentrations of the virus in their bodily fluids, making it more probable that they could pass it on to a sexual partner.

People who are managing their HIV with medication will usually have less of the virus in their blood and bodily fluids, which decreases the risk that they will transmit it to a partner. However, being on HIV medication does not eliminate the risk of transmission, so condoms must still be used.

There are no documented cases of HIV having been contracted through saliva, so couples are generally given the OK to kiss as much as they want. However, there is a theoretical risk of transmitting the virus through deep kissing if the infected partner has open mouth sores or blood in his saliva (perhaps from severe gum disease) and the uninfected partner also has sores or cuts in or around the mouth.

Sexual partners can also engage in other acts of intimacy in which bodily fluids are not exchanged, or where bodily fluids don’t come into contact with the mucous membranes that line the mouth, anus, and vagina.

Having Children With an HIV-Infected Partner

There are also options for couples affected by HIV who want to have children. Some to consider are:

  • In-vitro fertilization
  • Artificial insemination
  • Adoption
  • Using a sperm donor
  • Using a surrogate mother
  • Limited unprotected intercourse (during ovulation only) — but this carries a risk of HIV transmission

For methods like in-vitro fertilization and artificial insemination, the sperm can be cleaned to remove as much of the virus as possible, but there is still a risk of transmitting the disease. Unfortunately, these methods are often quite expensive, and people who are already paying for HIV treatment may not be able to afford them.

While it’s highly unlikely that a healthcare professional would ever recommend having unprotected sex with an HIV-infected partner in order to have children, Shuford says that many couples do just that.

Couples who want to attempt to conceive naturally should talk to their doctor about the best time to have sexual intercourse, Shuford says. To minimize risk and increase the chance that they’ll become pregnant, it’s important for women who are trying to conceive to know when they’re fertile, have unprotected sex only during that fertile period, and limit the number of times they have unprotected sex.

If a woman who is infected with HIV gets pregnant, transmission of HIV from the mother to the baby is “another risk that has to be managed by the patient and physician,” says Shuford. The mother should manage her HIV with medication to reduce the amount of virus in her blood, and the baby can be treated immediately at delivery to reduce the risk of transmission.

Rather than avoiding intimacy, couples dealing with HIV should be aware of the risk of transmission, what activities involve risk, and what they can do to reduce it. Hugging, most kissing, and touching are all safe activities — and will be a great comfort to the person with HIV.

By: Diana Rodriguez

Medically Reviewed by: Lindsey Marcellin, MD, MPH

How is Hepatitis C Transmitted?

Sanjay Gupta, MD, Everyday Health: It’s basically a simplistic question, but what does blood-to-blood transmission mean? You have blood in a syringe, for example. How long has it been sitting there, and how long can it still transmit the virus?

Douglas Dieterich, MD, The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai: It’s probably 7 to 10 days.

Dr. Gupta: So if blood is sitting in a syringe for 7 to 10 days and then it is used again, it can still transmit?

Dr. Dieterich: Yeah, it’s scary.

Dr. Gupta: It’s remarkable.

Dr. Dieterich: Yeah, it is. It’s a smart virus.

Dr. Gupta: Cocaine straws — and admittedly I have never done that — but how would cocaine straws, that doesn’t sound like a blood-to-blood transmission.

Dr. Dieterich: Well, it’s a sharp straw you know. You get a little nick, a little blood. Even other things that you don’t even think about, like manicures, pedicures, boxing, rugby — a lot of people get cuts, they are in the scrum — so things like that are all risks that you don’t even think about.

Dr. Gupta: That’s going to scare a lot of people. When you talk about manicures, for example. Is there a way that can be done properly, or what’s happening?

Dr. Dieterich: You know, it’s hard to sterilize those instruments, so I think to be perfectly safe you should just bring your own manicure instruments. You have seen people get their cuticles nicked, right, when they have a manicure, and then they dip the scissors in the blue viral culture medium there and shake it off? Then it’s not sterile, you know, by any means.

Dr. Gupta: That doesn’t do the trick.

Dr. Dieterich: That doesn’t really do the trick, no.

Dr. Gupta: Today, the blood supply is safe, but anyone who was given blood from a blood bank before 1992 is also at risk of hepatitis C. Bottom line: sharing needles is not the only way to transmit this virus, so even if you never used illegal drugs, it may still be a good idea to get tested. With Everyday Health, I’m Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Be well.

 

By: Dr. Sanjay Gupta