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STD Symptoms

Each STD has its own set of symptoms that accompany an active infection.  Many people can have an active infection without experiencing any of the symptoms associated with that particular STD.  If you are concerned about a particular STD, please refer to its tab on the table below.  Or, use our STD symptom checker and test recommender to gauge your risk for each STD.

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STD Stats and Symptoms

Chlamydia is a common STD that can infect both men and women. It can cause serious, permanent damage to a woman’s reproductive system, making it difficult or impossible for her to get pregnant later on. Chlamydia can also cause a potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy that occurs outside the womb).

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Burning while urinating
  • Abnormal discharge
  • Pain and swelling in testicles
  • Rectal pain
  • Rectal discharge
  • Rectal bleeding

Most people who have chlamydia have no symptoms. If you do have symptoms, they may not appear until several weeks after you have sex with an infected partner. Even when chlamydia causes no symptoms, it can damage your reproductive system.

What happens if I don’t get treated?

The initial damage that chlamydia causes often goes unnoticed. However, chlamydia can lead to serious health problems.

If you are a woman, untreated chlamydia can spread to your uterus and fallopian tubes (tubes that carry fertilized eggs from the ovaries to the uterus), causing pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). PID often has no symptoms, however some women may have abdominal and pelvic pain. Even if it doesn’t cause symptoms initially, PID can cause permanent damage to your reproductive system and lead to long-term pelvic pain, inability to get pregnant, and potentially deadly ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the uterus).

Men rarely have health problems linked to chlamydia. Infection sometimes spreads to the tube that carries sperm from the testicles, causing pain and fever. Rarely, chlamydia can prevent a man from being able to have children.

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Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that can infect both men and women. It can cause infections in the genitals, rectum, and throat. It is a very common infection, especially among young people ages 15-24 years.

Symptoms

  • Burning while urinating
  • Green, yellow or white discharge
  • Painful or swollen testicles
  • Vaginal bleeding between periods
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Rectal pain
  • Rectal soreness
  • Painful bowel movements

What happens if I don’t get treated?

Untreated gonorrhea can cause serious and permanent health problems in both women and men.
In women, untreated gonorrhea can cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). Some of the complications of PID are

  • Formation of scar tissue that blocks fallopian tubes;
  • Ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the womb);
  • Infertility (inability to get pregnant);
  • Long-term pelvic/abdominal pain.

In men, gonorrhea can cause a painful condition in the tubes attached to the testicles. In rare cases, this may cause a man to be sterile, or prevent him from being able to father a child.

Rarely, untreated gonorrhea can also spread to your blood or joints. This condition can be life-threatening.

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Syphilis is an STD that can cause long-term complications if not treated correctly. Symptoms in adults are divided into stages. These stages are primary, secondary, latent, and late syphilis.

Symptoms

Primary

  • Single or multiple hard sores, can be painless

Secondary

  • Skin rashes
  • Mouth sores
  • Fever
  • Swollen glands
  • Sore throat
  • Patchy hair loss
  • Headaches
  • Weight loss
  • Muscle aches

Latent

  • Can go dormant for up to 30 years
  • Loss of coordination
  • Paralysis
  • Numbness
  • Blindness
  • Dementia
  • Organ failure

What happens if I don’t get treated

Left untreated, syphilis will continue to progress through to the latent stage and ultimately death.

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Genital herpes is an STD caused by two types of viruses. The viruses are called herpes simplex type 1 and herpes simplex type 2.

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Sores or blisters on or around the genitals, rectum or mouth
  • First outbreak is usually accompanied by flu-like symptoms

What happens if I don’t get treated?

Genital herpes can cause painful genital sores and can be severe in people with suppressed immune systems. If you touch your sores or the fluids from the sores, you may transfer herpes to another part of your body, such as your eyes. Do not touch the sores or fluids to avoid spreading herpes to another part of your body

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Hepatitis B is a liver infection caused by the Hepatitis B virus (HBV). Hepatitis B is transmitted when blood, semen, or another body fluid from a person infected with the Hepatitis B virus enters the body of someone who is not infected. This can happen through sexual contact; sharing needles, syringes, or other drug-injection equipment; or from mother to baby at birth.

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Dark Urine
  • Clay colored bowel movements
  • Joint pain
  • Jaundice

HBV is a chronic condition that is important to monitor to ensure it does not get to a critical stage.

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Hepatitis C is a liver infection caused by the Hepatitis C virus (HCV). Hepatitis C is a blood-borne virus. Today, most people become infected with the Hepatitis C virus by sharing needles or other equipment to inject drugs.

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Dark urine
  • Clay-colored stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Joint pain
  • Jaundice

HBC is a chronic disease that should be monitored to prevent deterioration of the liver.

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HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It weakens a person’s immune system by destroying important cells that fight disease and infection. No effective cure exists for HIV. But with proper medical care, HIV can be controlled. Some groups of people in the United States are more likely to get HIV than others because of many factors, including their sex partners, their risk behaviors, and where they live.

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Flu-like symptoms

HIV is a very serious disease that can lead to death by completely suppressing your immune system.  The danger of HIV/AIDS is not what the infection does to your body but rather the doors it opens for other infections to spread uncontrolled within the body.

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Trichomoniasis (or “trich”) is a very common sexually transmitted disease (STD) that is caused by infection with a protozoan parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. Although symptoms of the disease vary, most women and men who have the parasite cannot tell they are infected.

Symptoms

  • Can be symptomless
  • Itching and burning inside the penis
  • Discharge with unusual smell
  • Itching, burning, redness and soreness of the vagina

What are the complications of trichomoniasis?

Trichomoniasis can increase the risk of getting or spreading other sexually transmitted infections. For example, trichomoniasis can cause genital inflammation that makes it easier to get infected with the HIV virus.

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