Carnegie Mellon University
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are very common.  By age 25, about half of all sexually active young people will get one. STIs often show no symptoms, so many people who have one don't know it.  The only way to know if you or a partner have an STI is to get tested and knowing helps you to protect each other.

  • Recommendations for STI testing depend on your individual circumstances.
  • If you are currently sexually active, have a new sexual partner or multiple sexual partners, have had a STI in the past, have had unprotected sex, and/or share injection needles, you should be tested for STIs.
How is the STI Testing Performed?
Chlamydia

Urine sample

and/or

Rectal swab
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)

Blood sample

or

Oral swab
Gonorrhea

Urine sample

and/or

Rectal swab

and/or

Throat swab
Syphilis
Blood sample

Most often, STIs do not show any symptoms.  Symptoms can include:
  •  
    • Growth, blister or sore on genital area
    • Abnormal discharge from penis or vagina
    • Bleeding between menstrual periods
    • Pain or burning while urinating
    • Fever, fatigue, chills, cough
    • Rash
    • Swollen glands in the groin area
    • Rectal itching, bleeding, tenderness, or pain with passing stool
    • Swollen testicles or vulva
    • Sore throat
  • This list is not all-inclusive.  Please schedule an appointment at UHS to talk about any symptoms that concern you.
  • Abstain from sexually activity with any partner until you are examined.
  • Schedule an appointment for a physical exam at University Health Services.
  • Abstain from sexual activity with any partner until you are examined.
  • Schedule an appointment for a physical exam at University Health Services.
  • University Health Services offers expedited partner therapy for chlamydia infection.  That means that you or your partner can receive treatment quickly if either of you has been diagnosed with chlamydia.  If your partner has been diagnosed with chlamydia, contact us.
  • Use barrier protection (i.e. male or female condoms, or dental dams) for every sexual activity, including oral sex.
  • Have an annual exam, talk with your health care provider, and get tested for STIs.
  • Have one partner who has no STIs, and no other partners than you (a monogamous relationship).
  • Avoid sexual activity while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, as you are more likely to partake in risky sexual behavior.
  • Get vaccinated against Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).
  • There are many effective options [PDF] for preventing pregnancy.
  • Any form of hormonal contraception (birth control), should be used with a barrier (condom, etc.) 100% of the time for the best protection against STIs.
  • Many birth control methods are available at UHS.  Schedule an appointment with us to talk about birth control options.
  • UHS offers emergency contraception, i.e. Plan B or “The Morning after Pill”.  This can be taken by a female partner up to 5 days after unprotected sex, but is most effective if taken within the first 3 days. 
  • Either you or your partner can get emergency contraception at UHS without an appointment.  Stop by our office and check in at the kiosk in the waiting room to see a nurse who can assist you.
  • This medicine is also available over-the-counter at local pharmacies.