Sexually transmitted diseases (STI/STD)
An HIV infection can only be ruled out 3 months after a potential exposure to the virus. Within the first 10-14 days after a potential exposure to HIV, the HIV screening test may still appear negative despite an infection.
In the event of a positive HIV test, a second blood specimen must be tested. An infection is only considered definitive after the confirmation of a positive result from both the HIV test and the HIV confirmation test.
Syphillis Screening Test
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease and has an incubation period of 7-21 days. It can take up to 3 weeks or more, after exposure to a potential risk, until any symptoms occur and the laboratory tests show positive. If symptoms are present and the syphilis tests are negative, the analyses should be repeated in 1-2 weeks.
Syphilis does not elicit any protective immunity against reinfection. Reinfection can occur if the person comes into contact with Treponema pallidum again.
If a person has previously had syphilis, the screening test and the TPPA remain positive. Only on the basis of the RPR can it be determined in such cases if the patient currently has an active infection.
Hepatitis C Screeningtest
Hepatitis C is a viral infection which primarily destroys the liver cells. The most common complications are liver cirrhosis and liver carcinoma.
The hepatitis C virus (HCV) can be transmitted in various ways: intravenous drug use, a pinprick, unprotected sexual intercourse (the risk is lower than with HIV) or at birth if the mother is HCV positive. In 30-40% of cases the cause of transmission is unclear.
The incubation period (time between infection and the onset of the disease) is 2 weeks to 6 months.
The usual screening test for hepatitis C is the detection of HCV IgG antibodies in the blood. However, after infection, it can take several weeks before the screening test shows positive. If the screening test is positive, further tests must be carried out, such as the HCV immunoblot or HCV RNA testDer übliche Screeningtest für Hepatitis C ist der Nachweis von HCV-lgG Antikörpern im Blut. Nach der Ansteckung kann es jedoch einige Wochen dauern bis der Test positiv wird. Ist der Screeningtest positiv, müssen weitere Bestätigungstests durchgeführt werden, wie z.B. der HCV-lmmunoblot oder der HCV-RNA-Direktnachweis.
Chlamydia trachomatis is transmitted through unprotected sexual intercourse. The incubation period is not precisely defined and is generally one week to several weeks.
At the outbreak of symptoms, the molecular biologic evidence should be detectable by mean of PCR. The first morning urine is most suitable for this test, as the concentration of bacteria in the morning urine is at its highest. Chlamydia trachomatis does not elicit any protective immunity against reinfection. Reinfection can occur if the person comes into contact with Chlamydia trachomatis again.
Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted infection with an incubation period of 2-7 days. At the time of an outbreak of symptoms, the molecular biologic evidence of gonococci should be detectable by means of PCR. If the urine is being tested, the first morning urine is the most suitable, as the concentration of the gonococci in the morning urine is the highest. Therefore, this is the best way to determine the presence of an infection.
Gonorrhea does not elicit any protective immunity against reinfection. Reinfection can occur if the person comes into contact with gonococci again.
Mycoplasma genitalium Screeningtest
Mycoplasma genitalium can cause both non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU, inflammation of the urethra) in men and women and inflammation of the uterus or fallopian tubes in women. This bacterium may also be responsible for other infections of the upper genital tract and can lead to infertility or a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy. It is transmitted through sexual intercourse.
Bacteria culture tests take several weeks and are therefore unsuitable for routine diagnostics. Although not available in all laboratories, a very good method of testing is based on molecular biology and uses PCR (polymerase chain reaction). We offer this test in our laboratory along with chlamydia and gonococcus PCR.