At Willow Womens Center, our licensed medical professionals will offer you no-cost sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing after a positive pregnancy test at the discretion of our medical staff based on the information you share with them. We provide testing for the two most common STIs: chlamydia and gonorrhea. You can rest assured that you will receive medical services confidentially and without judgment.
Gonorrhea is a very common STI that is spread from person to person through sexual contact with another person who has the infection. It can also spread to a child during the birth process.
You can be infected with gonorrhea and not even realize it because most women do not have any symptoms. If a woman does experience symptoms, they are mild, and she can incorrectly believe she has a vaginal infection.
If left untreated, gonorrhea can have serious long-term consequences. If the infection stays undetected in your body, it puts you at greater risk for contracting human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Untreated gonorrhea can also spread to your blood and joints, which is very dangerous.
However, when gonorrhea is properly diagnosed, it is curable if treated appropriately with antibiotics. It is important to understand that antibiotic-resistant forms are increasing, so it is crucial to complete treatment exactly as directed if your gonorrhea testing is positive.
At the discretion of our medical staff, we will test you for gonorrhea before you are seeking an abortion. If you have an untreated gonorrhea infection and have an abortion, bacteria can be pushed further into your reproductive system, causing pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
PID is a serious infection of a woman’s reproductive organs. It can cause short-term and long-term complications, including infertility, chronic pain, scarring, and even death.
If You Continue Your Pregnancy
If you choose to continue your pregnancy, you will receive STI testing once you are under the care of an OB/Gyn doctor as part of your prenatal care. You are at increased risk of miscarriage, premature birth, and stillbirth if you have an untreated gonorrhea infection while you are pregnant. Gonorrhea can also cause low birth weight, severe eye infections, blood infections, and pneumonia in newborns.
How We Test You for GonorrheaTesting for gonorrhea is quite easy, requiring only a urine sample. The process is straightforward:
- Do not urinate for one hour before the test.
- Our nurse will give you instructions to provide a first-catch urine sample.
- We will send your urine sample to a laboratory for testing.
- We take your privacy seriously, and for that reason, we will make an appointment so you can obtain your test results in person. We cannot release your test results over the phone.
- Our nurse will review your test results with you and answer any questions you may have. You will need to seek immediate treatment from your physician or another medical provider. Our clinic is not able to provide this for you, but we might be able to help you with local referrals.
What Happens if You Test Positive for Gonorrhea?
As we discussed, gonorrhea is curable when it is properly treated. It is important to take your prescribed antibiotics precisely as directed and abstain from sex until you have finished the entire course of antibiotics.
We will also advise you to have your partner or partners tested and treated if necessary, so you do not get reinfected. We understand this can be a difficult conversation, and we can help you with it. You should be retested about three months after your treatment. We can provide you with information to free STI Clinics in the Beloit, WI area for retesting.
Please note that any positive results from an STI test will be automatically reported to the local Public Health Department by the testing lab – this is mandatory for all communicable diseases.