Visiting a clinic - what to expect
If you are worried you have symptoms, you will need to visit your GP or a clinic and have an examination carried out. You will receive free and confidential sexual health advice and information in a non judgemental way, from a team of friendly, understanding and competent staff.
A doctor or senior nurse usually conducts examinations and you can request to be examined by either a male or female doctor or nurse.
- The doctor will examine your vagina, vulva (outside of the vagina) and cervix (neck of the womb) to look for any sign of infection
- He or she will then conduct an internal examination, similar to a smear test so that swabs (a bit like cotton but smaller and rounded) can be taken from the vagina and cervix. They will also check for internal lumps
- Swabs will also be taken from the urethra (tube where you urinate)
- You will also be asked to give a urine sample and blood test if you are being tested for syphilis, HIV and hepatitis B and C
- The doctor will examine your penis to look for any obvious sign of infection
- If you show symptoms of an STI it may be necessary to insert a small loop into the tip of the penis to take samples from the urethra (tube where you urinate)
- You will be also asked to give a urine sample and blood test if you are being tested for syphilis, HIV and hepatitis B and C
What happens next?
You may be given some of your test results straight away along with any necessary treatment. All samples have to be sent off to a lab so the results may take longer to come back. The clinic will arrange a confidential way to get these to you.
If you are worried, see our STI section for information on infections or you can do one of the following:
- Visit your GP – if you do not already have a GP, you can find your nearest GP here (external link)
- Central North West London NHS Trust (CNWL) (external link) offer local contraception and sexual health clinic appointments, which you can book online or by telephone on 020 3317 5252
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