STI Testing Over the Internet

Getting tested for a sexually transmitted disease/infection (most often abbreviated to STD or STI) can be embarrassing for anyone, which is why many people now prefer to opt for an online testing package or service. This article discusses these services, and more particularly whether or not they are accurate or reliable.

What is involved in online STI testing?

Most online STI testing services will request a urine sample as these are easy to produce and can allow for an accurate diagnosis. The majority of services will send a kit with a container for the sample to you once you engage their services.

The benefits of STI testing over the internet

As mentioned briefly in the introduction to this article, one of the major benefits of STI screening over the internet is the discretion and confidentiality it can offer. This means that you can seek an STI test if you feel too embarrassed to go into a walk-in center or talk to your GP about it, and with many STIs like Chlamydia and Gonorrhea testing and treatment is extremely important because of the potentially serious health consequences of leaving these conditions untreated.

This level of discretion also means that STI testing is taken up more, and in the UK there have been concerns about getting at risk populations to take up the test. Chlamydia and Gonorrhea are two problematic conditions that are a major health concern in the UK, particularly as these conditions can remain asymptomatic for quite some time after infection, making their transmission more likely as people are unaware that they are carrying the disease.  

Disadvantages of STI testing over the internet

One of the major concerns about online STI testing providers is the accuracy and reliability of the services provided. Regulation of online services remains an issue, so the best way to determine the accuracy and reliability of an online service you are interested in is to look for reviews and accreditation from reliable sources.

Online STI services can’t always offer you the same level of support and encouragement as a GP or walk in service.

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