I’ll know if I have an STD… right?

No Symptoms

While some STDs do produce symptoms, many people with an STD have no symptoms at all. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), many youth in the age range of 15-24 do not know they are infected because they do not have any symptoms.

Two Types

There are two types of infections—bacterial and viral. Bacterial infections can be treated with antibiotics. In this case, antibiotics treat the disease, but they cannot reverse damage already caused before the medication was taken. Viral infections, on the other hand, cannot be treated by antibiotics. In the case of viral infections, only the symptoms can be treated. Certain viral infections may clear up on their own, just like the common cold, but many other viral infections remain permanently in the body, like HIV.1

Some of the Risks

A few of the risks associated with STDs include infertility, cancer, HIV, pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy, and increased vulnerability to developing other STDs. Also, many STDs can be passed from mother to child. Getting tested and reducing risk behaviors are critical steps in preventing the spread of STDs. While condoms provide some degree of risk reduction from certain STDs, they do not protect against all STDs, especially those passed by skin to skin contact 2.

So how can you really know whether or not you have an STD? Whether you have symptoms or not, if you are sexually active, you may be at risk. The only way to know for sure is to get tested.

The Pregnancy Clinic offers free testing for syphilis, gonorrhea, hepatitis B, HIV/AIDS, herpes lesions, chlamydia, bacterial vaginosis & yeast. Call today for an appointment at 301-262-1330.

 

1 Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). Center for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/std/default.htm Accessed August 4, 2013.
2. Scientific Evidence on Condom Effectiveness for Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Prevention [Workshop June 2000], Summary report of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, NIH. DHHS. July 20, 2001.

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I want an abortion procedure NOW. What do I do?

Slow down! There are several factors to consider before scheduling your abortion procedure.

1. Am I pregnant? Without a reliable pregnancy test, you don’t know if you are pregnant or not! FREE pregnancy testing is available at The Pregnancy Clinic. Call to find out available times.

2. Is my pregnancy viable (alive)? The only way to determine the viability of the pregnancy is through an ultrasound. This non-invasive test is done in our office and is FREE. If your pregnancy is not viable, that could indicate a miscarriage. Up to 30% of early pregnancies may end in miscarriage1. The Pregnancy Clinic offers pre-abortion ultrasounds to determine whether or not a pregnancy is viable or will miscarry naturally. If your pregnancy is not viable, you may be able to avoid the pain and expense of an unnecessary abortion procedure.

3. What happens after I have an abortion procedure? There are both physical and emotional risks and side effects associated with abortion procedures, including:
• Damage to organs, anesthesia complications, and even death2,3,4,5
• Depression, anxiety, guilt, grief, and anger6,7,8,9

Scientific evidence indicates that abortion is more likely to be associated with negative psychological outcomes when compared to miscarriage or carrying an unintended pregnancy to term.10,11,12,13,14
It might feel like abortion is the only answer right this minute, but before you make a decision, get the facts about how an abortion might impact your life, both now and later.

FREE counseling is available at The Pregnancy Clinic. Call or come in to speak with someone who is not connected to your situation financially, prior to scheduling an appointment for an abortion.

1. Wilcox AJ, Weinberg CR, O’Connor JF, et al. Incidence of early loss of pregnancy. N Engl J Med. Jul 28 1988;319(4):189-94. Petrozza, John C. “Recurrent Early Pregnancy Loss.” Recurrent Early Pregnancy Loss. Medscape Web site. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/260495-overview Accessed August 6, 2013.
2. Paul M, Lichtenberg S, Borgatta L, Grimes DA, Stubblefield PG, Creinin MD, eds. Management of Unintended and Abnormal Pregnancy: Comprehensive Abortion Care. UK:Wiley-Blackwell; 2009.
3. Katz V, et al. Comprehensive Gynecology. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Mosby-Elsevier; 2007.
4. Induced Abortion, Patient Education Pamphlet. American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. November 2008.
5. Dilation & Curettage, Patient Education Pamphlet. American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. December 2005.
6. Cougle JR, et al. Depression associated with abortion and childbirth: a long-term analysis of the NLSY cohort. Med Sci Monit. 2003;9(4):105-12.
7. Fergusson DM, et al. Abortion in young women and subsequent mental health. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2006;47(1):16-24.
8. Pedersen W. Abortion and depression: a population-based longitudinal study of young women. Scand J Public Health. 2008;36(4):424-8.
9. Rees DI, Sabia JJ. The relationship between abortion and depression: new evidence from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study. Med Sci Monit. 2007;13(10):430-6.
10. Coleman PK. Resolution of unwanted pregnancy during adolescence through abortion versus childbirth: individual and family predictors and psychological consequences. J Youth Adolesc. 2006;35:903-11.
11. Reardon DC, Coleman PK, Cougle J. Substance use associated with prior history of abortion and unintended birth: a national cross sectional cohort study. Am J Drug Alcohol Abuse. 2004;26:369-83.
12. Cougle J, Reardon DC, Coleman PK. Generalized anxiety associated with unintended pregnancy: a cohort study of the 1995 National Survey of Family Growth. J Anxiety Disord. 2005;19(10):137-42.
13. Broen AN, Moum T, Bodtker AS, Ekeberg O. Psychological impact on women of miscarriage versus induced abortion: a 2-year follow-up study. Psychosom Med. 2004;66(2):265-71
14. Broen AN, Moum T, Bodtker AS, Ekeberg O. The course of mental health after miscarriage and induced abortion: a longitudinal, five-year follow-up study. BMC Med. 2005;3:18.
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