Can a Gynecologist Test for STDs?

It’s a good idea for women to visit their gynecologist regularly. That’s because gynecologists provide important services for women. During wellness tests, gynecologists can help women deal with annoying issues like yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis. And, of course, gynecologists also work to diagnose dangerous diseases like cervical and breast cancer. But can a gynecologist test for STDs? The short answer is that yes, gynecologists can test for STDs, but they don’t typically do so. 

Pap Smears and Wellness Exams

It can be easy to assume gynecologists test for STDs while conducting pap smears and/or wellness exams. However, the reality is that these physical examinations are not designed to detect STDs. The main problem with these tests –– in regard to STD identification –– is that they’re solely physical. In other words, gynecologists may only recommend further STD testing if they notice obvious STD symptoms. 

The issue here is that many STDs don’t manifest outwardly. In fact, a good number of STDs can remain asymptomatic for months –– or even years –– at a time. Plus, STD symptoms can look extremely similar to other, more innocuous conditions. It’s very easy to confuse discharge as a result of a yeast infection with discharge caused by chlamydia or gonorrhea. 

It is true that gynecologists will look for the presence of HPV in connection to cervical cancer when conducting a pap smear. Again, though, the aim of a pap smear is to determine the presence of cancerous cells within the cervix –– not to diagnose STDs. 

STD Testing Through your OBGYN

If, a gynecologist notices STD symptoms, they’ll then recommend their patient receive further testing. Additionally, it is possible for patients to request further STD testing from their gynecologist. The key here, though, is that you have to ask for it. 

From there, getting tested through your gynecologist’s office will likely be similar to getting tested at a general practitioner’s. Often, doctors will have to send off test samples (blood, urine) and wait for results to return from a remotely located lab. It’s also important to note that STD tests conducted by a general practitioner or gynecologist will appear on your permanent health record –– whether you test positive or negative. This, in turn, could affect your health insurance rates

A Word from Same Day STD Testing

Gynecologists provide vital services to women and help save lives. However, their goal isn’t to specifically identify and diagnose STDs when performing wellness exams or pap smears. The sad reality is that it’s possible to pass a pap smear with flying colors and still have an STD. 

At Same Day STD Testing, we specialize in STD identification. We use only the most sophisticated testing methods on the market, and our facilities are designed to ensure your privacy. You won’t have to wait in line, answer probing questions, or make special requests for STD tests. Instead, you can get tested in privacy today. Contact one of our team members at 844-394-8520 if you have any further questions, or if you’re ready to protect your health and wellness, find a facility near you here.

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