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Do Hospitals Perform STD Testing When Drawing Blood?

Are you up-to-date with your sexual health screenings? If you are sexually active, you should regularly schedule sexually transmitted disease (STD) tests to protect yourself from any resulting health problems. If you are experiencing STD symptoms, you might wonder:

  • Do I have a sexually transmitted infection (STI)?
  • Will blood tests show if I have an STD?
  • Do hospitals do STD testing when they draw blood?

Hospitals do not automatically run STD tests on your blood sample. You will need to specifically request STD testing. If you want an accurate and rapid STD test, contact Rapid STD Testing today.

Basic Purpose of Blood Testing

Have you ever questioned why doctors draw your blood when you visit a health clinic? Blood work reveals deficiencies in the body and provides early detection for various diseases.

Doctors review your blood work data to see if your numbers fall within the average range. The data points for a normal range can fluctuate depending on your:

  • Gender
  • Race
  • Age

If your blood work comes back as abnormal, this could indicate a potential health concern. However, there are many underlying causes for abnormal test results, and not all of them require treatment. Some issues resolve themselves naturally.

For example, if you are a woman getting blood testing done on the heaviest day of your menstrual cycle, your iron levels might be a little bit lower than the average range. However, if you have blood testing done on a day when you were not menstruating, you might be within the normal range.

It is wise to discuss any medical concerns with your doctors and listen to their professional feedback. Once you have your test results, doctors can offer medical advice such as taking supplements or starting a treatment regime.

What Do They Check for in a Blood Test at the Hospital?

Hospitals put their patients through a series of routine blood tests, including:

  • A complete blood count test (CBC) that checks for anemia, blood cancer, heart disease, indicators, bleeding and clotting problems, and any signs of infection
  • A blood chemistry panel that assesses the health of your muscles, organs, and bones

Other Types of Blood Tests

Additional blood tests may include:

  • A thyroid panel test: Your thyroid regulates your metabolism, mood, and energy levels
  • A basal metabolic panel test:This blood test is a necessary step for diagnosing hormone imbalances, liver disease, and diabetes

Do They Test for STDs When You Get Blood Work?

Health-conscious individuals asking, “Do hospitals do STD testing when they draw blood?” might be misinformed about how to identify STDs. While some STDs are detectable via blood tests, doctors will usually administer a blood test along with a swab test and a urine test for more accurate results.

Another way to test for STDs is a visual examination of the sores or a microscopic examination of a bacterial culture sample.

Some STDs, like chlamydia and gonorrhea, do not need blood testing since lab technicians can accurately diagnose them with a urine sample. Human Papillomavirus (HPV) also does not require blood testing; labs instead use a Pap smear and HPV test.

Your doctors will not include STD testing with your regular blood work unless you inform them of your symptoms. If you are concerned about sexually transmitted diseases and want tests run, contact Rapid STD Testing for a 10 panel STD test.

STD Detection by Blood Work Check

If you engage in unprotected sex or sexual contact with multiple partners, you could be putting yourself and your sexual partner at risk for an STD. Sexually active adults need to book regular blood tests to check for STDs and prevent further transmissions.

Herpes

When you mention herpes, most people think of large mouth sores and visibly infected genitals. On the contrary, herpes symptoms do not need to be present for transmission to occur. You may be unable to tell that you or your partner is infected, so it is prudent to undergo regular testing for STDs.

During testing, lab technicians will search your blood sample for HSV-1 and HSV-2 strains. If these strains are present, you are positive for oral or genital herpes. An immunoglobulin test will also reveal if you had a past infection.

Herpes is a challenging STD to contain because people frequently spread the disease unknowingly. You should schedule regular blood tests so you can know if you have contracted the disease. Once you have your diagnosis, you can seek treatment and take proper precautions.

HIV

HIV is the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). There is no cure for HIV, but your doctor can help you manage your symptoms and prevent transmission.

Testing for HIV involves your doctor taking a capillary draw or completing a venipuncture to obtain your blood sample. Your blood sample will then undergo tests to rule out the presence of HIV-1 and HIV-2 antibodies. If you have either of these antibodies, you could potentially be HIV- positive.

A second confirmatory testing is necessary to receive an HIV-positive diagnosis. If you are HIV-positive, consistently taking your HIV medication is the best way to keep symptoms at bay and protect others.

Syphilis

When your immune system is under attack from an infection, it produces antibodies. During blood testing, lab technicians search for these antibodies as indicators that your body is fighting an internal disease.

Rapid plasma regain (RPR) and the venereal disease research laboratory test (VDRL) are two blood tests technicians use to look for Syphilis antibodies. These tests can also indicate if you had a past Syphillis infection.

Hepatitis B

The three blood tests for Hepatitis B are as follows:

1. The Antigen Test: If you test positive, you are infectious and could spread Hepatitis B to others.

2. The Anti-HBs Test: If you test positive, you are immune to Hepatitis B. You may have had Hepatitis B in the past and thus gained immunity, or you received the vaccination. You will not pass the virus to others.

3. The Anti-HBc Test: If you test positive, you may have chronic infectious Hepatitis B. You could spread the virus to others.

Individuals at a high risk of contracting Hepatitis B typically engage in:

  • Non-monogamous sexual relationships
  • Sexual relations with a Hepatitis-B positive partner
  • Injection-based drug use
  • Professional careers that handle blood
  • Same-sex relationships

Doctors recommend that everyone, regardless of sexual history, get a Hepatitis B vaccination.

If you think you are safe from STDs because you had blood drawn with zero abnormal results, ask your doctor, “Do hospitals do STD testing when they draw blood?” Guaranteed your tests did not include an STD screening unless you requested one ahead of time, and you could still be at risk.

How to Prepare for a Blood Test

If you suspect you have an STD and have scheduled a blood test, you might have a few questions.

  • Do you need to be fasting? Fasting requirements vary depending on the type of blood test you take. Your doctor will inform you if you need to be fasting.
  • Do you need to pause medications? Antibiotics, antidepressants, beta-blockers, steroids, lithium, and certain vitamins can skew your test results. Consult with your doctor about safely pausing your medications.
  • What if you faint? Be sure to drink plenty of water beforehand. Being well-hydrated makes your veins easier to tap and might reduce lightheadedness. Your doctor can provide you with juice or a cookie afterwards if you feel faint.
  • When you get blood work, do they check for STDs? The blood work at your annual physical will not automatically include STD testing unless you request it.
  • Do hospitals do STD testing when they draw blood? No, you need to ask for STD testing.
  • Does Insurance Cover STD Testing? If you are a woman under 24 years of age or at high-risk, you are eligible for free syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea screenings. If you are a man, you are eligible for free syphilis and HIV screenings.
  • Can you get free STD testing? Yes, but be sure not to put yourself at risk of an inaccurate diagnosis by working with low-quality clinics.

Get a Bloodwork Check for STDs at Rapid STD Testing

Do you need a blood test for STD and HIV? Call us at (866) 872-1888 Rapid STD Testing for same-day STD testing.