Despite popular belief, it is possible to have a sexually transmitted disease or infection during an unexpected pregnancy. There are at least 25 different types of STDs, and while some of them have noticeable symptoms, others do not. If you are considering abortion, but are concerned you may have a STD, there may be a few things you want to consider first. Identifying any health risks, such as a sexually transmitted disease or infection, is important before moving forward with an abortion decision.
Are you leaning towards abortion as an unexpected pregnancy decision, but you’re not sure if you have contracted a STD? Avenue Women’s Center understands the challenges of navigating through an unexpected pregnancy and having concerns about STDs. We are here to answer any of your questions through a nonjudgmental environment, and our expert pregnancy consultants can provide you with information needed for your next step. At each of our six locations in DuPage County, our caring staff will take the time to understand your unique situation and work to accommodate your needs. Contact us today to get started!
Seeking Care for a STD Before an Abortion
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 1 out of 4 women between the ages of 14 and 19 are infected with at least one STD. As you are probably already aware, STDs are typically passed from one person to another if sexual intercourse has taken place, and every year, there is an estimated 19 million new STD infections in the U.S. alone. If you suspect you may have an STD, or if you have not been recently tested, then it can be helpful to be screened before an abortion.
It is generally recommended to seek treatment for an STD as soon as possible. If you plan to have an STD test at the clinic prior to an abortion, know there is a chance a screening for an STD may add an additional cost to the procedure. If cost is a concern, often testing is available at a reduced cost in various local clinics, county health departments, or community health centers.
An undiagnosed STD may lead to complications during an abortion procedure, and this includes medical abortions as well. If an STD is left untreated, an abortion may leave you vulnerable to the spread of bacteria into your cervix. For women who may have become infected with chlamydia or gonorrhea, it’s estimated they are 23% more likely to develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) after having had an abortion. PID has the potential to spread beyond the reproductive tract, leading to serious complications. This may include an increased risk of an ectopic pregnancy, or a heightened infertility rate if damage is inflicted upon your fallopian tubes.
If you are experiencing complications from an STD or PID, then it is recommended that you contact your doctor for treatment right away.
Obtaining information about STDs and abortion procedures does not have to be done on your own, as Avenue Women’s Center aims to provide clients with accurate and reliable information. You can meet with our staff for a private consultation, where you can openly express any questions or concerns you may have regarding a possible pregnancy or an unexpected pregnancy decision. If you’re uncertain about whether or not you’re pregnant, our centers offer free, medical-grade pregnancy tests and the chance to discuss your options with a compassionate client advocate. Reach out today for more information about STDs and your unexpected pregnancy choices!
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2014). Which STD tests should I get? Retrieved from: https://www.cdc.gov/std/prevention/screeningreccs.htm
- National Institutes of Health Medline Plus. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. Retrieved from: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/pelvicinflammatorydisease.html.
Reviewed by Patricia Kuenzi, APN-CNP, MSN, ANP, PNP.
The information provided here is general in nature. It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention. Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.