This package is recommended by our physicians to screen for recent exposure to HIV and the 6 most common STDs: HIV, Herpes (HSV1 & HSV2), Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, and Hepatitis (A, B & C). View sample results (LabCorp PDF).
A free physician consultation is included with this test if the results are positive for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, or HSV2. It will be up to the physicians discretion if a prescription will be provided. Please note that certain tests in this package may take 5 to 7 business days to be completed once the specimen is received at the laboratory.
What's it used for?
Sexually active individuals are exposed to numerous risks called sexually transmitted diseases. Used to be called venereal diseases, these are among the most common infections in the USA. The American Sexual Health Association explains that one in two individuals that are sexually active will end up with an STD by the time he or she is 25 years. The association adds that the USA is witnessing around 20 million cases of sexually transmitted diseases, yearly; and, the majority of the cases are occurring in young individuals between the ages of 15 and 24. Despite the fact that these cases are more prevalent among young people, studies show that only twelve percent of this subgroup get tested. From another angle the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that due to undiagnosed sexually transmitted diseases, around twenty-four thousand women are becoming infertile every year. The national burden of these types of infections is causing the USA more than sixteen billion dollars every year.
HIV (early detection of HIV-1, by qualitative RNA): HIV is a sexually transmitted infection affecting the lives of 1.1 million individuals in the United States. The CDC explains that one in seven infected American does not even know they have the infection. HIV is a virus that can spread by getting in contact with the body fluids or blood of an infected person. Once in the body, it attacks the person ‘s immune system like the T-cell. If undetected an untreated, the virus can destroy a significant number of these cells, preventing the body from fighting off infections and diseases. The more the infection progresses the harder it becomes to halt its consequences. There are three stages of HIV: the last one is when the virus turns into AIDS. What makes this virus special is the fact that the body can’t get rid of it completely, even with the proper treatment. It is a virus for life. The HIV-RNA test can detect the presence of the HIV virus in your blood. That is the quickest way to know whether you were infected or not. After exposure, the virus normally starts appearing in the blood within nine to eleven days. Even before the antibodies start developing, this qualitative test can detect the virus.
Herpes 1 &2: the herpes infection is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the herpes simplex virus. There are two different types: HSV-1 and HSV-2. Both viral infections might not show symptoms. So, you might be infected with either one and not know it. HSV-1 is the virus causing oral herpes. It generally exacerbates as cold sores and fever blisters appearing on the face and around the mouth. HSV-2 is the virus causing genital herpes. It is usually linked to the outbreaks occurring around the genital area. It is estimated that sixty seven percent of people, who are forty-nine years of age or younger, are carrying the herpes simplex virus type-1 without even showing symptoms. The American Academy of Dermatology
adds that twenty percent of sexually active individuals, in the united states, carry the herpes simplex virus type-2. In this package, an individual can test for the herpes simplex virus antibodies. This specific test doesn’t actually check for the presence of the virus itself in our system; however, it can identify if a person's immune system has built antibodies against the virus. Antibodies are proteins that the body produces as a result of invading organisms such as bacteria, viruses and fungi. They are the defensive line of our body. So, when the person has been infected with the herpes simplex virus, he or she will have the corresponding antibodies. This test can specifically detect the antibodies of both types of herpes.
Chlamydia: it is a sexually transmitted disease that can affect both genders. While being highly treatable, this bacterial infection can damage the woman ‘s reproductive system leading to infertility and other complications. Having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who is infected can pass the infection to you. A man does not need to ejaculate to pass the bacteria. Pregnant women who may be infected with chlamydia
can pass the infection to their baby during childbirth. This STD does not remain dormant in the body. Once detected, it has to be treated with the proper course of antibiotics and the infection will be cured. This infection is highly common among sexually active young individuals. In the United States, every year, more than 2.8 million adults contract Chlamydia. According to the American Sexual Health Association
, people aged fifteen to twenty four years constitute 65% of chlamydia diagnoses in the USA. This test can identify the presence of the bacterium in the urine one to five days after being exposed.
Gonorrhea: it is a bacterial infection transmitted sexually by having oral, anal and vaginal sex with an infected person. The CDC estimates that every year, 820,000 Americans get new gonorrheal infections. the highest rates are witnessed among young teenagers that are sexually active, young adults and African Americans. It is improbable to show sigs and symptoms of this infection, which makes this bacterial infection highly contagious. Even in the absence of symptoms, an infected person can still spread the bacteria. This urine test identifies the presence of the bacterium in as early as one to five days post exposure.
Syphilis: it is a blood test that detects syphilis antibodies, developed as a response of our immune system. Syphilis is an infection that is sexually-transmitted (orally, vaginally or anally). The partner contracts the bacteria by coming in direct contact with a syphilis sore, referred to as chancre: a firm raised painless sore. The antibodies test is the most effective test to detect this STD at any stage. There are three stages during which syphilis develops in the body. When the bacterium does not get treated, syphilis progresses into the next stage.
Hepatitis A (Hepatitis A Antibodies, IgM): hepatitis A is a highly preventable disease of the liver that is called by the hepatitis a virus. While it may be transmitted from an infected person to another through fecal oral route, it can be spread through contaminated water and food. Hepatitis a is self-limited and does not lead chronic condition. Most cases do not require any treatment; and, infected individuals recover completely without any liver damages. Only in the presence of acute hepatitis A infection that the body develops IgM antibodies. these can be detected anywhere from one to two weeks after exposure. They remain in the body for up to fourteen weeks. This test detects these IgM antibodies.
Hepatitis B (Surface antigens & Core antibodies total): hepatitis B is a viral infection leading to the inflammation of the liver. You can contract it sexually by being in close contact with someone who’s infected. It may take up to six months to recover from this viral infection, after which you will develop immunity and will no longer be considered contagious. When the infection becomes chronic, lasting longer than six months, it may scar the liver and cause more pronounced damages such as liver failure and liver cancer. When the virus enters the body, the immune system detects a specific protein found on the surface of the virus. This protein is called the surface antigen. As a result, the immune system starts a defensive measure by creating and releasing antibodies in the blood against this antigen. This test detects the HBV antigens and antibodies, which can indicate the presence of the hepatitis B virus.
Hepatitis C (Antibodies): hepatitis C is a liver inflammation caused by a virus: the HCV. The hepatitis C virus needs treatment and does not resolve on its own without risks. It may take up to six months for the infection to be managed. Once the virus enters the body, our immune system develops antibodies to attack it. The result will be the accumulation of antibodies against HCV. This test detects these antibodies.
Why take the Recent Exposure STD test?
The HIV RNA test is the best way to detect an infection as early as 9-11 days after exposure. With more than thirty-seven million people infected with HIV and AIDS around the globe, this sexually transmitted disease is a high impact global burden. Getting tested early can help prevent the progress of the disease into a more complicated stage. If undetected and untreated at the right time, HIV may lead to many complications, other than its progress into AIDS. It could lead to damages to the brain and spinal cord, causing the inflammation of the brain or the inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain. Untreated HIV can also lead to nerve damage
, poor blood circulation, behavioral changes as well as difficulties in thinking.
The herpes simplex antibodies test
is the best way to determine whether you have been infected with either types of herpes virus. If you think you have an exposed you need to get tested. while in many cases the virus may not exacerbate symptoms, the most common signs are the following:
- The symptoms of herpes simplex virus type one include experiencing small fluid filled blisters around the mouth, feeling tingling or burning sensations around the mouth and nose, developing a fever or a sore throat, or ending up with swollen lymph nodes in the neck.
- The symptoms of herpes simplex virus type two include having small blisters and open sores in the genital area, witnessing at tingling and burning sensation in the genital area, having abnormal vaginal discharge, developing a fever, muscle aches, headache, and feeling pain while urinating.
This herpes antibody test is very accurate and does not require the individual to show any symptoms. So, even if you do not have herpes outbreaks, you can still be tested.
Taking the chlamydia test is essential to detect and screen for the chlamydia bacterium. This STD does not normally exacerbate signs and symptoms, making it a silent STD. Women and men, who are involved in high risk behaviors (homosexuals, multiple partners, an infected sex partner, using illegal drugs, living in detention facilities or selling sex for drugs or money), need to get tested. Also, individuals who had a previous chlamydia infection, another STD, or who do not use condoms consistently need to get checked. The test is also used to assess the effectiveness of the given treatment. Once detected and treated with the proper antibiotics, you have to retake the test three months after the termination of the treatment to ensure the eradication of the bacteria.
The Gonorrhea urine test is the best tool to detect and screen for a gonorrhea infection. It is also used to assess the success of a treatment and the eradication of the infection.
The Syphilis antibody test is used to screen for and diagnose the presence of the syphilis infection. After being treated, one needs to re-take the test to ensure the success of the treatment. if you have been treated for other STD’s, are pregnant, are a man who is having sex with another man, or are engaging in high-risk sexual activities; then, it is recommended to get tested regardless of whether you are showing any symptom.
The hepatitis A IgM test is the best tool to diagnose an acute hepatitis A infection. It can also evaluate if a person is immune to hepatitis A and the need to take the corresponding vaccine. if you think you have been exposed to hepatitis A, it is recommended that you get tested. From another angle, noticing symptoms linked to this virus can be alarming. In that case you also need to get tested. Symptoms include having a fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine and pale stools, joint pain or jaundice.
The hepatitis B test (surface antigens an antibodies) is a great tool to detect and screen for a hepatitis B virus infection. If you have any of the symptoms associated with hepatitis B, you need to be tested. these include feeling extremely tired, losing appetite, having nausea, jaundice, fever, abdominal pain, swelling and muscle aches. Some also develop a dark colored urine. From another angle, you need this test if you have a history of high-risk behavior for hepatitis B. These risk factors include having sex with somebody who is infected with the virus, being in close contact or living with somebody who is infected, being a man who is having sex with a man, being a child born to an infected mother, sharing drug needles, or being exposed to contaminated blood at work.
The hepatitis C test (antibodies) is a great tool to screen for and diagnose a hepatitis C infection. It can also be an effective way to monitor the progress of the infection while following the proper treatment. if the number of antibodies is not decreasing, another treatment plan may be required. If you suspect that you may have been infected, you need to get tested to address the infection properly and prevent any complication such as liver cirrhosis, cancer and failure. If you are at high risk for contracting hepatitis C, this test is the best tool to detect it. Risk factors include being a health worker exposed to hepatitis C, being an illicit drug user, having HIV, receiving a piercing or tattoo from an unclean environment that is not sterilizing the equipment’s, or being born to a woman who has hepatitis C.
What could affect results and lead to false negative?
For example, when it comes to the herpes simplex virus, you might end up with a false negative result if you are tested too early. It will take the body about twelve to sixteen weeks post-exposure to the herpes virus to start forming the antibodies necessary to fight off the virus. Getting tested prior to this time frame may show a negative result despite being infected.
What your Recent Exposure STD results mean?
HIV RNA qualitative: this blood test can help diagnose an HIV infection at its earliest stages. The results are either positive, meaning that you have a primary or acute HIV infection; or, negative, meaning that you do not. In some cases, you may need to take additional tests, especially if you think that you may have exposed to the virus.
Herpes 1&2: the results of this test show the presence or absence of antibodies in the individuals’ system. A positive result means that antibodies linked to the virus are found, which indicates an infection. A positive herpes type-1 test means that the blood contains antibodies against the type-1 herpes virus, which indicates an active infection with this specific virus. A positive herpes type-2 test means that there are antibodies against this type of virus in the blood, this means that the person has an active infection caused by the herpes simplex type-2. A negative result for both indicates the absence of both viruses. Even if you show no HSV signs and symptoms, if you have the HSV antibodies in your system, you will test positive.
Chlamydia: a positive test result indicates the presence of an active chlamydia infection. And negative test result means that, up till the day you got tested, you do not have the bacteria in your system. Those who tested positive need to get their sexual partner tested and treated.
Gonorrhea: a positive test result indicates an active gonorrhea infection that needs the right treatment plan to get eradicated. A negative test result marks the absence of the infection in our body, up until the day we took the test.
Syphilis: a positive antibodies test result indicates the presence of the bacterium in our system. A negative test result marks its absence. Make sure you are getting tested at the right time, giving your body enough time to start developing antibodies. Testing too early might lead to false negative results.
Hepatitis A (Hepatitis A Antibodies, IgM): a positive IgM hepatitis A test indicates that you either have an active hepatitis infection. A negative test indicates the absence of the Hepatitis A virus and that you are not immune to it.
Hepatitis B (Surface antigens & Core antibodies total): Having normal results means that you are negative for both surface antigen and core antibodies. This also means that you have never contracted hepatitis B. A positive result indicates that you are actively infected with hepatitis B. in most cases it may take up to six months to recover & will develop immunity from the virus. Immunity does not mean that you will be able to pass the virus the others.
Hepatitis C (Antibodies): having a positive test means that you do have antibodies against the HCV, which indicates and active infection. A positive result may also indicate that the person may have been infected with the virus at some point of their lives. A negative result indicates the absence of the virus in your system.
Commonly Asked Questions
Are herpes type-1 and 2 the only types of herpes? No. there are more than twenty-five viruses in the herpes family with eight of them infecting humans. For example, the herpes virus type-3 is referred to as the varicella zoster virus and is associated with chicken pox and shingles. The herpes virus type-4 can lead to infectious mononucleosis.
How can we treat herpes? Why you cannot cure herpes, you can still manage it. Numerous medications exist to prevent and shorten the duration of herpes outbreaks. There’s also a type of medicine that can be taken daily to prevent outbreaks and lower the risk of spreading the virus to others.
Can I keep my herpes status secret? It is always recommended to tell your sexual partner whether you have herpes or not. If you have the virus in your system, you need to follow preventive measures during sex. Your partner may also need to get tested, if infected.
Can I get vaccinated against HIV? There is currently no vaccine to protect you against HIV. Taking preventive measures is the best way to stay on the safe side. These include avoiding high risk activities like having unprotected sex and sharing needles while injecting drugs. Having multiple partners can also boost your risks.
How can we prevent STD’s? The best and most reliable way to avoid a sexual transmitted disease is to abstain from any type of sexual contact. If you are sexually active individual, being in a long-term relationship that is mutually monogamists within uninfected individual is your best bet. You may also want to use correctly and consistently condoms.
If I got chlamydia, can I get re-infected? Yes. Chlamydia is a bacterial infection. Unlike HIV, it does not stay in your system and your body will not developpe the proper immune response against it for life. Even after you seek treatment and cure your infection, you may get re-infected with chlamydia if you get exposed again. The CDC explains that reinfection is very common.
If I have Hepatitis A, how long am I contagious? You can spread the hepatitis A virus anywhere between one to three weeks before symptoms start appearing. Once jaundice develops, you will still be contagious for several week.
Can I prevent Hepatitis A? Yes. Getting vaccinated against hepatitis A is the best preventative measure one can take. Also, practicing good hygiene such as washing hands after using the bathroom, after changing diapers and before and after eating or preparing food can be efficient.
If I got hepatitis A infection, can I contract it again? No, once the virus enters your body, your immune system develops a class of antibodies (IgG) that will make you immune to it for a lifetime.
Can I contract Hepatitis A without knowing it? Yes, possibly. The hepatitis A virus is spread by getting in contact with the stool of an infected person or via contaminated water and food. So, if an infected person uses the bathroom and does not wash his or her hands, he or she can pass the virus to anything it touches. You may also contract hepatitis A from an asymptomatic infected partner through sexual contact.
Once I contract hepatitis C and get treated, would it be possible to contract it again? Yes. A prior hepatitis C infection does not necessarily protect you from being infected again. With this type of hepatitis, your body does not develop the proper immune reaction to fight off upcoming infections.