The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention noticed a sharp rise in the number of new cases of the three common, reportable sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including chlamydia, gonorrhea and primary and secondary syphilis, in 2019. According to the agency, around half of the infections were diagnosed among people aged 15-24.
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Which Method of STD Testing is Suitable for Me?
Every sexually active individual must protect their sexual health. Regular STD testing is the only way to care for your sexual health. However, sometimes it becomes confusing to select the right testing method as there are so many options available. For your convenience, we have gathered information about all available STD testing methods in Ohio. Check them out to find out which option is suitable for you.
|Testing Method||Waiting Times||Speed of Results||Positive Consultation|
Private Testing (Walk-In Clinic)
10-20 Minutes with No Wait
Free With Positive Result
At-Home STD Testing
Free With Positive Result
Call for Appointment
Call for Appointment
Out-of-Pocket Cost Required
Limited Hours and Long Lines
Learn more in our ultimate guide to STD testing.
It can be, but it does not necessarily have to be. What many people need to understand is that laboratory tests would most often than not be relatively pricey due to the technology that is being utilized behind these diagnostic techniques. However, opting for specific laboratories that offer more convenient testing procedures and discounted prices for diagnostic tests would help ensure that the price will not be much of an issue in providing you with the conclusive diagnosis of your condition. It might take some independent scanning to find the right testing center for you in the most acceptable price range, but it is not as impossible as many people make it out to be.
Considering that a wide variety of testing kits and laboratory procedures can be performed to determine conclusively whether you have a particular STD or not, the time that it will take for your results to return will also be subject to the same inconsistency. Although there are specific laboratories that could produce your results even by the end of the day (albeit, it is extremely rare for institutions to do so unless necessary), most would often take a few days to a week before the results are either delivered or posted online through your secure personal profile (in the case of online transactions). In addition to that, the capability of the laboratory performing the test may also contribute to the overall timeframe of result delivery – causing delays in cases where there are several requests or understaffed to provide expedited results.
For more information, skip to the FAQs section on this page.
“1.8 million cases of chlamydia, an increase of nearly 20 percent since 2015; 616,392 cases of gonorrhea, an increase of more than 50 percent since 2015; and. 129,813 cases of syphilis (all stages), an increase of more than 70 percent since 2015,” reported the CDC.
Hence, STDs continue to be a concerning issue for the US and Ohio state is hugely impacted. The number of STDs cases are rising steadily every year, and the only way to stop this from becoming an epidemic is to get tested.
STIs (sexually transmitted infections) are passed from one person to another through anal, vaginal, or oral sex. The dangerous thing about an STD is that people are unaware of their health status and keep transmitting the virus to others. When the infection reaches its more progressive stage, it becomes a disease and is referred to as an STD.
There are several different types of STDs, such as HIV, herpes, and human papillomavirus (HPV) are STDs. Regardless of which type of STD one contracts, its root cause would be a virus, bacteria, or a bug.
STDs are becoming a lot more common in Ohio. But, the real problem lies in the low numbers of people opting to get tested for STDs and STIs. Past research reveals that people who contract the most common STDs are never diagnosed at the right time, so they pass the disease to their sexual partners unknowingly.
It might feel intimidating and scary to identify your sexual health status by getting tested, but it is essential to prevent an STI from progressing into an STD. The good news is that most of the common STDs can be treated, even those that cannot be cured outright. Often, STDs do not impact your chances of living a healthy and active life if you choose to get tested for STDs at the right time.
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In 2018, Ohio recorded 63,220 chlamydia cases, 25,146 gonorrhea cases, and 740 primary and secondary syphilis cases, while the highest number of cases was reported in Cuyahoga County where around 11,025 chlamydia cases and 4,552 cases of gonorrhea were recorded by the Ohio Department of Health (ODH). This could be attributed to reduced access to STD prevention and care, cuts to funding, and a decline in the use of condoms at the state and local levels. This has led to an increase in disease prevalence.
The most notable increase was among college-aged students and young adults aged 15-24. Chlamydia is the most common STD in the state, and this disease impacts both men and women. Between 1997 and 2017, the rate of reported chlamydia infections rose substantially, from 206 to 529 cases/100,000 people. gender-wise chlamydia impacted 717.8 females/100,000 female population in 2018 compared to national average of 692.7/100,000 females. on the other hand, 359.6 males per 100,000 male population were diagnosed with chlamydia in Ohio in 2018 compared to the national average of 380.6/100,000 people, indicating that fewer males are affected by chlamydia than females in the state.
Between 2012 and 2018, a substantial rise was noticed in the rate of chlamydia in Ohio, with 460 cases in 2012, 459 in 2013, 468 in 2014, 489 in 2015, 521 in 2016, 526 in 2017, and 543 in 2018. This trend indicates that the number of chlamydia cases was increasing every year. In 2018, the state recorded more new infections per 100,000 people.
Regarding gonorrhea, the rate has risen by over 50% since 2012. In 2012, Ohio reported 142.9 cases/100,000 people. In 2013 the number went slightly up with 143 cases and decreased considerably in 2014 with 138.3 cases/100,000 people. The number went up to 143 again in 2015 and rose to 176.8 in 2016. Gonorrhea infections in Ohio crossed the 200 mark in 2017 with 205 cases/100,000 people and reporting slightly over 216.3 cases/100,000 people in 2018. It is worth noting that Ohio has the highest gonorrhea rate in the entire US Midwest region, according to 2018 statistics.
The state’s primary and secondary syphilis rate dropped between 2017 and 2018, but in reality, the rate has almost doubled since 2012. In 2012, Ohio reported 3.7 syphilis cases per 100,000 people that increased to 3.8 in 2013, 4.8 in 2014, and 4.9 in 2015. In 2016, the number of cases increased to 6.2, and the most significant hike was noticed in 2017 when Ohio recorded 7.2 cases per 100,000 people. By 2018, the rate declined to just over 6 cases.
Furthermore, over one-third of chlamydial infections reported in the state in 2018 occurred in Cincinnati, Columbus, or Cleveland. And, around 1 in 5 gonorrheal infections were diagnosed in the city of Columbus in 2018. Columbus reported around one-quarter of all primary/secondary syphilis diagnoses in Ohio in 2018.
According to the ODH, between 2015 and 2019, 20-24-year-old population was the most affected with gonorrhea, reporting around 7,198 cases, followed by 25-29-year-olds with 5,581 cases, and the third most impacted group was 15-19-year-olds with 4,675 cases.
Regarding gonorrhea, African-Americans reported the highest share of all recorded cases in the state with 12,890 cases and a rate of 791.6/100,000 people between 2015-2019. In 2015, this number was much lower, with the black population accounting for 8,850 cases. Whites reported 7,424 cases in 2019, making them the second most impacted race in the state. In 2015, around 3,925 cases of gonorrhea were reported in whites. Ethnicity-wise, the Non-Hispanic community recorded the biggest share of infections with 18,250 cases between 2015-2019, while males were more vulnerable to gonorrhea than females with 13,727 and 12,433 cases, respectively.
Chlamydia cases in Ohio between 2015-2019 were reportedly higher among people aged 20-24 with 24,284 cases, followed by 15-19 age group with 18,974 cases, and the third most impacted group was 15-19-year-olds with 11,518 cases. The Black/African American population reported the highest number of cases amongst all races with 25,270, at a rate of 1,551.9 cases per 100,000 persons. This number was reasonably low in 2015, with 21,400 African-American individuals reporting the disease. The white population recorded 22,090 cases overall in 2019, while in 2015, this number was lower at 18,941 cases overall. Gender comparison reveals that females were more impacted by chlamydia, with 43,789 cases on the whole, whereas males reported 21,825 cases between 2015-2019.
Primary/secondary syphilis cases were reportedly higher among people aged 25-29 with 433 cases in 2019, followed by 30-34-year-olds with 365 cases, and 20-24 was the third most affected group with 345 cases overall. Black/African American people reported the highest number of cases with 841, while this was lower in 2015 (663). Conversely, the white population registered the second-highest syphilis infection rate with 926 cases compared to 2015 rates, which is also significantly high (557). The male population reported 1,613 syphilis cases, while females accounted for considerably fewer cases (404).
The Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Surveillance Program is responsible for tracking gonorrhea, chancroid, chlamydia, and syphilis in the state. It offers information to prevent the spread of STDs/ The program’s surveillance system includes data/information on the number of new diagnoses, demographic trends, treatments offered to patients, and whether needle-sharing or sexual partners were informed of their possible exposure to an STD. This information is shared with STD prevention staff, healthcare services providers, educators, planners, and the public. STD Surveillance Program also offers support and guidelines on reporting STD-related data.
Ohio’s STI Prevention Program is an important initiative from the Ohio Department of Health to prevent and control the spread of STIs. In this regard, six essential elements are used, including community/individual behavior change, partner services, data management and surveillance, quality assurance of medical/laboratory services, leadership/program management, and training and professional development. Under this initiative, free medications are supplied to eligible clinics offering STI testing to ensure they can treat STI and funding for these medications arrive from state and federal sources. Participating healthcare providers also receive these medications so that those who cannot afford STI treatment could receive them.
Yes. Certain companies offer at-home testing kits wherein you are the one that will collect the specimens necessary for the test at the comfort of your own home. Sure, it might sometimes be subject to errors due to the potential contamination of the sample from collection to transportation, but it does offer a great deal of privacy and convenience for patients who would prefer to have their identities hidden in fear that their community will judge them.
Depending on the test being performed and the testing physician's targeted diseases, various types of samples can be requested from you. In some instances, a minuscule blood sample of a few milliliters will be collected, some might ask for a urine sample, and others may opt for a genital swab. Again, the sample being collected will depend on the test being conducted and the outcome that is being targeted for this particular procedure.
Although NAATs are well-known for their accuracy and sensitivity in detecting most STDs, it is also subject to certain inconsistencies, especially in the case of herpes infections. In Herpes, outbreaks often result in a relative increase in the patient’s viral load – leading to a timeline that usually has specific peaks at certain intervals instead of a consistent rise in viral load throughout. As such, sensitive tests such as NAATs are still unable to accurately diagnose herpes conditions, especially in cases where the patient has recently become asymptomatic and is currently between outbreaks. Other tests such as culture testing and type-specific virologic tests are often employed instead as a confirmatory diagnosis for the patient’s condition.
A nucleic acid amplification test is a laboratory procedure that professionals often perform to make detecting a particular nucleic acid or gene being targeted easier and more convenient while still ensuring that the sample being collected is relatively minimal. Nucleic acid amplification tests, or NAATs, are usually the mainstay diagnostic test for most STDs due to their ability to detect the presence of pathogenic nucleic acids and genes in the patient sample with utmost accuracy and speed. NAATs depends on their ability to replicate the target RNA and DNA to create numerous copies – resulting in an increased convenience in the detection of the desired molecules instead of trying to either blindly look for one strand in a minuscule sample or collecting a large sample that could make the patient uncomfortable throughout the process. Although NAATs are often preferred for a more conclusive diagnosis of STDs, certain exceptions such as the availability of resources and instances of intermittent viral shedding could make NAATs less desirable than other tests. Fret not, however, as your physician is knowledgeable regarding these instances and would often request the best diagnostic procedure for your instances.
It would vary depending on the condition that is being tested. STDs behave differently due to the varying pathogenicity of each STD’s causative organism. In some instances, you can get accurately tested as early as two weeks following exposure, while some are intermittently inaccurate due to its recurrence (much like in the case of herpes infections). To avoid this, be sure to discuss the intricacies of the test with your physician to understand whether a particular test could provide you with a conclusive diagnosis or if it still needs another confirmatory test to establish its premise.
How Does it Work?
Most people experience feelings of hesitation when going to get tested for STD, despite knowing they might have contracted one. EasySTD was created to change that.
Visit your nearest lab or clinic, order your home testing kit online, and follow the given instructions from an STD testing provider.
After ordering your STD test, visit the testing center to get tested or take a self sample including urine, cotton swab, or finger prick with the home testing kit and mail it back.
Receive the lab-certified results of your STD test from your test provider via mail or phone within 2 to 3 days. If the test comes positive, consult your doctor immediately.