Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

If you're worried you have got an STI, go for a check-up at a sexual health clinic as soon as you can.

STI symptoms

  • unusual discharge from the vagina, penis or anus
  • pain when peeing
  • lumps or skin growths around the genitals or anus
  • a rash
  • unusual vaginal bleeding
  • itchy genitals or anus
  • blisters and sores around the genitals or anus

Go to a sexual health clinic if:

  • you have symptoms of an STI
  • a sexual partner has symptoms of an STI
  • you're worried after having sex without a condom

Many STIs have no symptoms at all, like HIV. The only way to know for sure is to get tested.

Find a sexual health clinic

What happens at a sexual health clinic

A doctor or nurse:

  • will ask you some questions about your sex life
  • may ask to take a look at your genitals or anus
  • will tell you what tests they think you need

Some clinics offer home testing kits for some STIs.

If tests show you have an STI, you should tell your sexual partner and any ex-partners so they can get tested and treated as well.

If you don't want to do this, the clinic can usually do it for you without naming you.

Common types of STI

[Last reviewed 2018-04-09]