STDs are commonly known as the shortened form for Sexually Transmitted Diseases, otherwise known as Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), there are more than 1 million everyday cases being reported globally and the actual number is estimated to be quite higher since many people do not report their infection.
What are STDs?
Sexually Transmitted Infections are infectious diseases that spread from one person to another via sexual contact, this can include any type of genital contact, be it anal, vaginal, or oral sex. All forms of intimacy are highly susceptible to infections like STDs or urinary tract infections if contacted by an already infected person. United States is seeing record levels of STD cases each year since 2013 and most of the cases are being reported by women the highest toll takers are people who fall between the age group of 15-24.
According to a study, there are more than at least 12 different types of STDs that are prevalent around the world. However, only a handful of STDs are highly in circulation accounting for almost 90% of the total STD cases in the United States. The following are the most commonly seen and reported types in the US:-
STD testing cost: Covering STDs that cause flu-like symptoms
The best way to know for sure is by getting screened for STDs – it is highly recommended if you have been sexually active lately. STD testing cost ranges between $24 and $79 in different labs and facilities across the U.S. However, individual testing can ramp up the cost, so we recommend going for panel testing that covers more than 2 common STD types in a single sample test.
The following table shows the STD test cost at 3 of our partner laboratories (CLIA – Certified) networks located across the U.S.
Name of our Partner Labs
Flu Vs STDs
Flu is a very common infection that is caused by the influenza virus. This is even more frequent in children who have a growing immune system that keeps them vulnerable to re-infection. One characteristic of flu is that the symptoms almost trigger immediately or within a day after contracting the virus from an infected person primarily via cough/sneeze droplets. However, on the other hand, STDs play silent and the symptoms do not show up for weeks or even months in some cases making it harder to diagnose and detect in the first place. So, if you are sexually active and suspect of having an STD then get tested for STDs right away without any further ado. When it comes to
Flu-like symptoms: Fatigue, Fever, Nausea, Vomiting, Diarrhea, and/or Headaches.
STDs with flu-like symptoms: Chlamydia
Chlamydia is caused by a bacteria named Chlamydia Trachomatis which spreads from person to person through sexual contact such as vaginal, anal, or oral sex. It is a myth that some believe oral sex doesn’t transmit chlamydia. n fact they are equally infectious and chlamydia is transmitted orally and if the symptoms occur around the oral region, then it is termed oral chlamydia. Symptoms of chlamydia include unusual genital discharges, frequent urination, pain while urinating, and excess vaginal bleeding in women. If you have any of these symptoms, then get tested for chlamydia as soon as possible. Leaving chlamydia untreated can lead to severe health complications such as infertility.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in Chlamydia include:
Other symptoms of Chlamydia include:
- Abnormal genital discharges
- Urge to urinating
- Pain during urination
- Vaginal bleeding in women
STDs with flu-like symptoms: Gonorrhea
Neisseria Gonorrhea is the name of the bacteria that causes Gonorrhea infection. Gonorrhea and other bacteria causing STDs (including Chlamydia) can also transmit orally if you had oral sex or touching your mouth or eyes unwashed after having sex with the infected person.
Gonorrhea is highly similar to Chlamydia. If you are diagnosed with Chlamydia, it is highly recommended to get tested for Gonorrhea as well.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in Gonorrhea include:
Other symptoms of Gonorrhea include:
- Pain while urinating
- Unusual genital discharges
- Swelling and pain in the testicles
- Pain during sexual intercourse
STDs with flu-like symptoms: Hepatitis
Hepatitis are different types of viruses named in alphabetical order that belong to the same family. Hepatitis viruses primarily target the liver. The symptoms can vary broadly depending on the type of Hepatitis you have.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in Hepatitis include:
- Fatigue (Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C)
- Fevers (Hepatitis A)
- Nausea and Vomiting (Hepatitis A and Hepatitis C)
STDs with flu-like symptoms: Herpes
Herpes infection is a very common STD in the United States. According to the latest reports, more than one out of every six people who are aged between 14-49 years are infected with genital herpes. Most people affected by HSV have not been diagnosed since the disease play a silent game of showing no symptoms. Genital herpes infections are the most contagious form of infection where the disease primarily spread through genital contact or intimacy with an infected person.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in Herpes include:
Other symptoms of Herpes include:
- Small red bumps or tiny white blisters
- Pain or itching around your genital area
STDs with flu-like symptoms: Syphilis
Syphilis is the second most commonly seen STD in Florida and one of the major ones across the United States. Syphilis is caused by a bacteria named Treponema Pallidum that progresses slowly and causes symptoms over the long run. Typically, the symptoms of STDs tend to take multiple days or weeks to appear, and in the case of Syphilis, the signs progress in multiple stages. The phases are classified into three types according to the severity of symptoms – primary stage, secondary and tertiary. Primarily symptoms often show mild symptoms like fever and other signs, the second stage can include sores which may appear around the infected area, and then the tertiary symptoms are where all these symptoms come together as an outbreak and most people land straight in the tertiary phase as the signs are dormant in the initial stages.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in Syphilis include:
- Nausea and Vomiting
Other symptoms of Syphilis include:
- Hair loss
- Fatigue and tiredness
- Joint pain
- Neurological and muscular disorders
STDs with flu-like symptoms: HIV
HIV is the most contagious and deadly virus that cannot be cured to date. However anti-retroviral drugs have been developed and used to control and suppress the virus and reduce the symptoms if addressed in the early stages.
HIV refers to the Human Immunodeficiency Virus that leads to a syndrome called AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome) which is the final stage of HIV. HIV passes through sex, blood, and sometimes prenatally but not through other contactless means like air and water. This virus progresses in three stages namely the acute stage – where little to no symptoms are seen, then chronic stage – symptoms are popping out and the last stage is AIDS where the immune cells are suppressed and there’s no recovery back.
Flu-like symptoms exhibited in HIV include:
- Nausea and Vomiting
Other symptoms of HIV include:
- Sore throat
- Weight loss
- Night sweat
- Dry cough
Symptoms of STDs in men and women
Symptoms of STDs can play lowkey and do not tend to show up at least a few days after the initial exposure, and some types can remain dormant for multiple weeks without any noticeable symptoms. This makes sexually transmitted diseases quite difficult to detect in the initial phase and remains a common reason for the infection to get spread to other partners even without your knowledge. When the symptoms start to show up, the following are some of the commonly reported STD symptoms in both men and women –
Symptoms in women
- Abnormal vaginal discharge
- Pain while urinating
- Painful sexual intercourse
- Pain in the back or lower abdomen
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
Symptoms in men
- Dark penile discharge
- Burning sensation during urination
- Swelling and pain in the testicles
- Anal itching
- Irritation in the penis
- Painful and irregular bowel movements
- Unexplained weight loss
- Joint pain
- Unusual sweat during the night
- Soreness in throat
Can STDs be cured?
STDs can be cured if you get diagnosed and treated at the right time – by the right time we mean, even more, the symptoms tend to show up. Bacteria causing STDs like Chlamydia and Gonorrhea can be cured completely with the right antibiotics. If you are tested positive for STDs your physician may assess the severity of the infection along with your symptoms and prescribe you medicines. It is important to continue your medications for the full course as some people stop mid-way seeing the symptoms disappear – which is not advisable. Even if your symptoms disappear, the bacteria is still surviving in your body and needs to be terminated fully. Also, your physician may recommend avoiding having intimacy until you are completely cured and then practice sex with only your marital partner – as monogamy reduces the risks of STDs.
However, some types of STDs are not curable yet. The virus causing STDs such as HIV, Herpes, and HPV is one of the highly contagious that can lead to multiple yet severe health complications if not addressed in the early stages. The virus causing STD symptoms can be suppressed with anti-retroviral drugs which helps slow down the activity of the virus and heal the symptoms. However, the invaded STD virus is still present in your anatomy and you are to live with it lifelong.