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Do I Have an STD?

A woman asks, "do I have an STD?" and wonders if a pap smear would detect the STD. She recently had a pap smear due to a urinary tract infection. Since then, she's had a sexual encounter with someone who could have a sexually transmitted disease.

Do I Have an STD Question

Abby,

I had a pelvic exam done about 7 months ago, because I had a UTI (urinary tract infection). But the doctor wanted to make sure it wasn't an STD. Since then I was with a strange guy who could have possibly had an STD. But we used a condom. Now I've been having some symptoms of a STDs. I just went to the gynecologist for a checkup and I'm scared its going to come back bad. Do they check for STDs when doing a pap smear? Do I have an STD?

Thanks,
Mandi

Do I Have an STD Answer

Dear Mandi,

Well, to answer your question, first off I would like to say that even though you used a condom (very good)! You know that doesn't fully protect you from pregnancy and/or STD's though, so yes you could have contracted an STD. And even more so I would be concerned with the symptoms you mentioned you have been experiencing.

Now on to your gynecologist visit, During your examination, your doctor will be checking you visually for signs of an STD. If, for any reason, the doctor suspects such a presence, either by you explaining your sexual history or during the examination, it would then be decided that you have a culture for an STD even though you may not be told that you were checked. 

My thought would be yes, but rest assured, even if they did not check you for an STD, a normal pap smear will detect an abnormality in the cells and you will have a "positive" result returned to you or you will simply be called by your gynecologist's office telling you that the results are positive. If they are positive, do not be scared because this usually just means that you need to schedule a second pap smear test to ensure that the results are correct. 

So I hope this answers your question and puts you at ease a little bit. Good Luck!!! And please continue to use safe sex practices!!!!!! Susan


Abby asked Nurse Susan for her expertise to answer the above question. A big thank you goes out to Susan for her continued contribution and support of our sexual health site.

Always,
Abby

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