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NAAT testing for STDs timeframe

Hi all.  Very briefly I engaged in unprotected sex with someone who I know very well.  However, I have had some urethral symptoms such as burning.  No discharge that I have seen.  I have had a test at a local clinic for NSU (NGU in USA) and the could not see a single WBC.  This is 15 days after the event.  Good news
I also bought a NAAT PCR test online that covers Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma and a host of other infections.  This came back as negative for everything.  Only thing is I took this test only 10 days after the event.  Is this enough time?  The testing company website states to wait 2 weeks, but to my way of thinking is if I had an infection that was casing these symptoms then surely its DNA would be detectable.  Also, I have seen many posts by Dr Hook & Handsfield that say anything from 5 days + is fine.  
So, should I believe these tests or spend more money and test agains??

Thanks in advance
1 Responses
207091 tn?1337709493
COMMUNITY LEADER
Yes, 10 days should be fine, especially as you have symptoms.

I don't know all your symptoms, but burning in your urethra can be caused by a lot of things. It can be from something causing irritation, or dehydration, or a lot of other things - https://www.healthline.com/health/pain-in-urethra

Not knowing your other symptoms, it's hard to pinpoint anything. You can always test again in a week or so, and see if anything appears.

Had it been at least an hour since your last urination when you tested? Did you follow the instructions exactly? I imagine they ask for first catch urine, and not midstream. Your first urine usually has more bacteria in it, making things easier to find.

If any of that didn't happen, maybe you'll want to retake the tests.
28 Comments
Hi. Thanks for the quick response.  Burning has been the only symptom. I hadn’t urinate for 4 hours and it was first part of the stream. All done as directed. So, sounds ok you think?
Yeah it sounds okay. The only thing I can suggest is to continue to work with your doctor if the burning doesn't improve. Maybe a referral to a urologist needs to happen, but it doesn't sound like anything related to an STD.
I’ve asked for a referral. Part of me wants to have another NAAT test as it’s now 17 days but I’ve seen so many posts on here saying I’d be fine after a week that I’d rather not part with more cash.
Many thanks for your advice
One more thing.....the swab/microscopy for NGU after 15 days, this should be reliable right? They didn’t go in very far with the swab (I’m male) only really the tip.
They then went to have a look under the microscope but no signs of WBC

Thanks again
Yes, that's fine for the timing and how it should be done.
Thanks Jessi, really appreciate it. I wonder why I’m on fire then!
I don't know - are you drinking enough water? Not too much alcohol or caffeine? Those can irritate the bladder, which in turn can irritate the urethra. Have you had a lot of acidic foods recently?

Those are really simplistic suggestions, I know, but I'm sure your doctor will ask them at some point.

Have you recently changed soaps? Started any new meds? Used a new lube or anything?

Here are some suggestions - some don't apply, but maybe you'll get some ideas. https://www.verywellhealth.com/urethral-pain-4174285
I don’t think it’s any of that though I do appreciate the input. Perhaps it’s psychological, perhaps both tests have missed something, though I’d certainly hope not. If I ever get to the bottom of it I’ll be sure to let you know.
I don’t think it’s any of that though I do appreciate the input. Perhaps it’s psychological, perhaps both tests have missed something, though I’d certainly hope not. If I ever get to the bottom of it I’ll be sure to let you know.
Another thing.....why do I keep reading that 2 weeks is the minimum time to wait to be tested?  This is making my head spin!!  Do I need to retest?  10 days post event for NAAT tests, 15 days for swab
Where do you keep reading that?

And you had your swab at 15 days? You didn't have a single WBC. If you had an infection, you'd have had at least a few WBC at that point.
Alot of the British health/STD clinic websites state 2 weeks. Also the company I bought the PCR test from..seems a bit conservative to me. Thoughts?
It seems that way to me, for sure. In the US, we test as early as 3-5 days. Even if we meet in the middle, you'd still be fine.
Even for infections like Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma??
Sorry for all the questions!! :)
Yes, at least according to this:

https://www.medhelp.org/posts/STDs/Clarification/show/1957561 (Ignore everything but the timing on this. This is old, and before we knew that MGen was an emerging STD.)

I also went back and read some old threads on this, and some people have been diagnosed before two weeks. Others seem to have taken longer, but it could also be because many weren't tested for these in their original testing.

If you want to read more - http://bit.ly/33B4XW0 - this is a link to a google search with MGen and testing questions on our site.




Thanks again Jessi.  Alot of reassuring stuff but some not so much.  I have bought another test as I'm now at 20 days.  I agree that the swab should have picked something up (and the NAAT, surely 10 days is enough??) but my obsessive nature has gotten the better of me!!
Let me know the results. :)
Sure will.  I should know by the end of the week.  Symptoms seem to have died down to the point of me almost forgetting about it now.  Fingers crossed it's nothing other than my mind getting the better of me
That's awesome. Keep me posted. :)
So, I should have had my results back by now but the lab are saying they have not received my sample.  To say I'm frustrated is an understatement.  Lost in the post I think.  I could scream!  This was going to be, in my mind, conclusive one way or the other and hopefully I could move on with my life.  Now I'm still going in circles thinking what if the first one was wrong and if the clinic possibly missed and WBCs.  GRRRRRRRR!!!!!
Oh my god. I'm screaming for you. Don't overreact though - just give another sample, and by all means, don't pay for it again if you had to pay for it already.

I believe everything happens for a reason. What the reason is for this, I don't know yet, but maybe it would have been read by a poor lab tech or something, and this time it will get a better one. Just hang in there!
I can do that, but that's another week of crippling stress
All came back negative Jessi :)
YAY! Congrats!!

How are your symptoms?
All cleared up with zero meds.  So, I've either got a great immune system or it was all in my head, which there's NO WAY it was
No, I don't think it was all in your head, but it could have been irritation, dehydration, a mild infection that your body cleared on it's own, an allergic reaction - the list is long and varied, and you'll likely never know, but I'm glad you're feeling better now. :)
It’s the never knowing that is the most frustrating thing. This has been an on and off thing for a few years but I’ve never once been able to pin down a specific infection.  Pathogen-negative NGU I guess, but that’s where is gets really vague!!
I get it - I am NOT good with the unknown.

If it happens again, perhaps see a urologist. If it's been recurring like this, a urologist may be able to help.
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