About the STI test kit and check-up for men (4 tests)
What the male STI test is for
The kit tests men for chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). These tests are for you if you do NOT have any symptoms, and if you are a man who only has sex with women.
We use a 4th generation HIV test – one of the most sensitive tests that is currently available. The blood sample that you provide will be tested for:
HIV p24 antigen (protein found in the HIV cell)
HIV-1 antibodies (made by your body to fight HIV-1)
HIV-2 antibodies (made by your body to fight HIV-2)
Antigens (protein found in the HIV cell) and antibodies (made by your body to fight HIV) are detectable at different stages of HIV infection.
If you are unsure whether you need this test, you can take our free STI assessment.
If you are a man who has sex with men, our STI Check-up for MSM may be more suitable. If you have symptoms, we recommend attending your local sexual health clinic.
To test for chlamydia and gonorrhoea, you will need to provide a urine sample.
You need to use the test kit within 30 days of receiving it and the pack needs to reach our laboratory within 4 days of you providing your urine sample.
To test for syphilis and HIV you need to provide a finger prick blood sample using a small finger pricking device, contained within the kit. You will only need to produce a small amount of blood and it shouldn't hurt.
The test kit contains all the information and equipment you will need to safely collect these samples at home. You can also view the instructions here.
When to take the male STI test
The ‘window period’ is the time period between potential exposure to HIV e.g. sex without a condom, and the point when the test will give you an accurate result.
Tests done too early may not be accurate.
The window period is different for the four STIs being tested:
- Chlamydia and gonorrhoea: two weeks after exposure
- HIV: 45 days after exposure
- Syphilis: 12 weeks after exposure
However, if you think you might have an STI, you can test immediately and repeat the test after the window period (you will need to purchasetwo test kits for this).
Test results are normally ready within 3 working days of your sample arriving at our partner laboratory. You will receive a text and an email when your result is ready.
If you don’t receive your results within seven days of posting your sample, contact us via your Patient Record.
Understanding your results
If your test result is ‘negative’ we'll upload the results into your Patient Record, which you can access by logging in through our website.
If your HIV result is 'reactive' (i.e. potentially positive) or indeterminate, we will phone you to discuss these results with you. If we cannot get through, we will send you a message asking that you at arrange a telephone consultation through your patient record as soon as possible. We may also need to contact you if your sample is labelled incorrectly.
If you test positive for chlamydia we will offer you free antibiotic treatment, provided that it is clinically appropriate.
If you test positive for gonorrhoea, syphilis or HIV, then we will advise you to attend your local sexual health clinic for further advice and treatment.
Please note, no test is 100% accurate but it should pick up these STIs if it is done at the correct time. If you are in any doubt, we advise that you go to you nearest sexual health clinic, or visit your GP.
Important information about the STI Check-Up For Men (4 tests)
This test kit is not suitable for you if you think you have been exposed to HIV within the last 72 hours, if you have any symptoms, you have tested positive for chlamydia or gonorrhoea in the last 6 weeks, or if you have tested positive for HIV in the past.
If you think you have been exposed to HIV within the last 72 hours, you should seek URGENT medical advice from your local sexual health clinic, GP or Accident & Emergency, as HIV Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) may be recommended as treatment.
If you have symptoms, you should NOT use this service. You require a face to face assessment at your local sexual health clinic or GP. If you have a skin rash; flu-like illness; fever; sore throat; headache; swollen lymph nodes; and think you are at risk of having HIV, you should seek URGENT medical advice from your local sexual health clinic or GP.
If you are known to be HIV positive or have recently tested positive, you should seek medical advice from your local sexual health clinic or GP.
If you have tested positive for Syphilis or HIV in the past, you can purchase one of our test kits that does not test for these infections.
Your test results will be completely confidential. We will not inform your GP or anyone else of your test results or that you have used our service unless you specifically ask us to.