Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

What are STIs?
STIs are infections. They can be bacterial infections or viral infections. Some can be cured with medication, while others are life-long conditions. What makes STIs different to other infections is how they spread. These infections are transmitted from person to person through sexual intercourse. This can make them difficult to discuss, both with your partner and with your doctor. Consequently, they spread easily and can go undiagnosed for long periods of time. Simple STI testing can identify these infections, even when you have no symptoms. Knowing what the risk factors and symptoms are can help you know when you should get tested.
Things to know:
  • Symptoms can resemble urinary tract infections,
  • Not everyone will experience symptoms,
  • Untreated STIs can cause infertility,
  • Pregnancy and birth can be complicated by STIs,
  • STIs can cause chronic pain and physical limitations (impotence),
  • You can prevent the spread of STIs by having a sexual health check before starting new intimate relationships.
If you are concerned that you may have been exposed to an STI, or would just like some peace of mind, book a sexual health check. Or learn more from our sexual health check list.

STI Check ListSTI TestingSTI TreatmentsSTI Fact SheetsNotifiable Diseases

Sexual Health Check List

When do you need to get a STI check?
You will want to consider having a sexual health check when you have STI symptoms or participate in “at-risk” activities.
What symptoms should you look out for?
Because most people won’t experience symptoms, waiting to see if you develop symptoms isn’t ideal. But they are a good cue to get a STI check done. Look out for:
  • a burning feeling when urinating,
  • itching and/or irritation of the genitals,
  • a ‘strange’ smell or discharge from the genitals,
  • men may experience swollen testicles,
  • women may experience bleeding and cramping between periods.
What are 'at-risk' activities?
Activities that can expose you to and cause sexually transmitted infections include:
  • Starting a new sexual relationship.
  • Having more than one sexual partner.
  • Your partner having more than one sexual partner.
  • Having unprotected sex.
  • Sharing injecting equipment.
  • Using unsafe tattooing or body piercing equipment.
Keep in mind that these are just guidelines, and do not take your personal circumstances into consideration. Your lifestyle will also impact how frequently you should be tested. You can discuss this with our sexual health practitioner to receive personalised advice.

STI Testing

Where to get a STI check
The Brisbane Centre for Sexual Health offers sexual health checks for STI testing. We test for bacterial and viral STIs including HIV, Hepatitis and Herpes. Additionally, all of the tests are available onsite, which can make it easier to get a STI check done.
What is involved in a STI check?
A sexual health check is quick and easy. It will include a:
  • discussion about your lifestyle and any concerns you have,
  • urine test to detect bacterial infections like Chlamydia,
  • blood test to check for viral infections like Hepatitis and HIV,
  • physical examination and swab test if discharge or sores are present.
Test results are usually available within 48 hours.
How to book a sexual health check
You can book an appointment for STI testing online using the button below. Simply choose “Standard Consult” from the appointment options and select a time that works for you. Alternatively, you can call the clinic using the call button. Our calls are managed by the Family Practice at Kallangur. When you speak to one of their receptionists request a standard consult with Sue Jamieson.


When STI testing returns a positive result for an infection you will need to return for a follow-up. The treatment options vary and depend on the infection detected. Some infections can be cured, while others are life-long and require long term management. Treatments can include:
  • Antibiotics
  • Penicillin Injections
  • Antiretroviral drugs
Your practitioner will discuss the treatment with you at your follow-up appointment. It is important that you follow the instructions for treatment. You may also be asked to repeat the STI test following treatment.

Notifiable Communicable Diseases

Several sexually transmitted infections are considered notifiable communicable diseases. Therefore, any diagnosis of these STIs will be reported by the pathology laboratories to various Australian health organisations including Queensland Health. The information sent is not identifiable in order to protect your privacy. It is simply used to track the prevalence of these infections within the population. For more information on the notifiable conditions visit the Queensland Health website.
What is PrEP and PEP?
PrEP and PEP are pre and post exposure medications aimed at preventing HIV infections.
PrEP - Pre Exposure
The pre-exposure PrEP is a daily medication. It’s designed to be used by individuals who have an increased risk of being exposed to HIV. If you work in the adult industry or are a man who has sexual relations with other men this may be for you. However, it’s not suitable for everyone, so consider discussing it with a prescribing practitioner before deciding to start this medication.
PEP - Post Exposure
PEP is a post exposure medication. It doesn’t prevent 100% of HIV infections, but can significantly reduce the risk of getting HIV following exposure. For optimal results it needs to be taken as early as possible (within 72 hours) of possible exposure. This medication is prescribed as a precaution, often after sexual assaults or assaults with exchange of body fluids. You may also consider it following a drug or alcohol induced episode or black out.
Find out if PrEP and PEP could be right for you. Book a consult to discuss it with our provider. Book With NP Sue