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I got tested 6 weeks after a potential incident. Everything came back negative. How accurate would my results be? Should I retest? If so when. I had some burning when I urinated and itching swollen testicles one week after potential exposure so am kind of concerned. I know there are some window periods. I am thinking that most everything would be detectable by the 4 week mark? So chlamydia, ghonorea, and hiv should be fairly accurate by the 6 weeks? Same with Syphillis? I am a little bit concerned about herpes simplex virus 2, it came back negative, but I read only 70% of people detectable at the 6 week mark? I was unable to get swabbed in time. I am not sure about hepatitis when it would be accurate but I seem to remember getting some immunizations shots as a child for this, although I could be wrong and am maybe thinking about something else. Thanks!


You would expect most STI tests would give you a good result by 6 weeks. Gonorrhea and chlamydia would give you a final result by 6 weeks. We find that most people with HIV or syphilis would show it in a test by 6 weeks, but we recommend a final test at 3 months just to make sure.

A herpes simplex virus (HSV) blood test (IgG) should detect something by 4 months. The herpes blood tests can be a bit tricky as it’s possible to get an inaccurate result (chance of a false positive or false negative result). If you do decide to do the herpes blood tests again I would talk with the health professional you see to discuss the pro/cons of the test. I think the best thing would be to wait and see if the symptoms return in the next few months. A common sign of herpes is that it is a reoccurring infection. The best test would be a swab from the area as that would let you know if it was herpes and if so what type. If someone did have herpes the best advice we give them to avoid transmitting it to someone else is to not have sex when someone is having symptoms and to use a condom. Given this it’s possible to still be safer while waiting to see about your HSV result. 

If you’re unsure about your vaccination history in regard to hepatitis B, you can get a blood test for this to see if you have been vaccinated. If your hepatitis B blood test is negative for the hepatitis B virus and you have no protection against it I would recommend to get the vaccine straight away.

I know it can be difficult to arrange sometimes, but if you do get similar symptoms again it would be good to get into the clinic while you are still experiencing symptoms as this can make it easier for the clinic to work out what is going on.

Let us know if this does not answer your question or if you have any additional questions or concerns.

Health Nurse

This answer was posted on June 12, 2019

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