While some people may be more familiar with the term STD (sexually-transmitted disease), at Boulder Valley Women’s Health Center, they use the term sexually-transmitted infection (STI) instead. The word disease can imply a long-term medical condition with obvious signs or symptoms. However, many sexually-transmitted infections have no symptoms and can be cleared up with treatment. An STI can be caused by bacteria, a virus, or other type of microscopic organism.
Boulder Valley Women’s Health Center offers testing, diagnosis, and testing for the following:
Some sexually-transmitted diseases can be cured with antibiotics, while others can be treated, but not cured.
Anyone is susceptible to developing an STI, and the symptoms vary according to the type of infection. Any unusual symptoms in the genital area can indicate a problem. Watch for:
Even if the symptoms disappear after a few days or weeks, the infection may remain and still require treatment. It is not true that once you have an STI that you can’t get it again -- they can recur.
The people at Boulder County AIDS Project offer free rapid HIV testing to Boulder Valley Women’s Health Center patients. These tests are available at the Boulder location on the first two Tuesdays of the month from 4-6pm, and at the Longmont location the third Wednesday of the month from 4-6pm. Testing is provided on a first come-first served basis.
Abstinence from sexual contact is the most reliable way to avoid STIs, but isn’t always practical. Other precautions: