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Northwestern Women’s Health Associates, S.C
680 N. Lake Shore Drive #1200, Chicago, 60611 | Get Directions

The importance of STD testing for women in Chicago,

At Northwestern Women’s Health Associates, we encourage our patients to have an open and honest dialogue with us about sexual health and the risk for contracting sexually transmitted diseases.

STD testing is something that every person who is sexually active should have done at least once, and for some, even more regularly. Still, in the United States, over half of sexually active people under the age of 25 will have contracted a sexually transmitted disease, and many will not even know they have it.

While the thought of bringing up STD testing can seem embarrassing, the truth is that it is one of the most important ways sexually active adults can protect their health, and in many cases, it can be life-saving.  When certain STDs are left untreated they can lead to serious conditions such as cancer and infertility.

At Northwestern Women’s Health Associates, we encourage our patients to have an open and honest dialogue with us about sexual health and the risk for contracting sexually transmitted diseases. Together, we can come up with a testing plan that makes sense based on your lifestyle and other risk factors.

What are STDs?

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are a group of infections that are transmitted between partners during vaginal, anal, or oral sex. STDs are common and can be dangerous, but the good news is that most of them are curable with treatment. The biggest thing to be aware of is that many STDs do not show symptoms, so it’s important to get tested. STDs do not discriminate, anyone can get them, so it’s important to stay proactive to protect your health.

We recommend STD testing in the following situations:

  • New sexual partners – You should receive testing if you are having sexual relations with a new person.
  • Unprotected sex – Having sex without protection increases the risk of contracting a STD. You should have testing if you are having any type of unprotected sex.
  • High-risk behaviors – If you engage in certain behaviors such as multiple partners, IV drug use, or sexual relations with a sex worker, you should receive frequent STD testing.
  • Exhibiting symptoms of STDs – If you notice symptoms that seem out of the ordinary, contact your gynecologist about testing. Some of the most common symptoms to look for include:
  •  Frequent urination
  •  Pain while urinating
  •  Unusual discharge
  •  Blisters or sores on the genitals or anus
  •  Painful intercourse
  •  Fever
  •  Flu-like symptoms
Call : 312-440-9400 OR Request an Appointment

Types of STDs

Image of a happy couple

There are many different types of sexually transmitted diseases and most of them look different from one another. Some of the more common ones are:

Chlamydia – A type of bacterial infection that often has very little symptoms. Some warning signs may include abdominal pain, pain during sex, pain when urinating, and genital discharge.

Gonorrhea – A bacterial infection that begins showing symptoms about 2-10 days after exposure. Some warning signs may include burning/pain when urinating, abnormal menstrual cycles, cloudy/bloody discharge, anal itching, and painful bowel movement.

HIV – This is the STD that scares most people because it’s well known as a precursor to aids. HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) impacts the body’s ability to fight off viruses. Early warning signs may include headache, fever, sore throat, or fatigue and are often brushed aside as a simple cold. Later, symptoms may develop such as weight loss, diarrhea, night sweats, and persistent fatigue

Herpes – A highly contagious virus, herpes presents in outbreaks, with the first often being the worst. Most common symptoms are red genital bumps accompanied by itching or pain.

Hepatitis – A type of contagious viral infection that affects the liver. There are three types: A, B, and C. Some warning signs may include nausea, dark urine, loss of appetite, fatigue, and muscle and joint pain.

Syphilis – A type of bacterial infection that can affect several parts of the body. In some cases, patients may have congenital syphilis which was passed from mother to baby. Some warning signs may include genital sores, enlarged lymph nodes, body rashes, fever, and soreness. Advanced syphilis can lead to neurological and cardiovascular problems.

If you are sexually active, it’s important to have an honest conversation with your doctor and ask about the availability of STD testing.  Northwestern Women’s Health Associates in Chicago, provides convenient and confidential testing as well as treatment options for patients in the area. If you would like to learn more, please call us at 312-440-9400.


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women’s healthcare, our team of experts is dedicated to providing every woman highest level of sensitive, specialized care

At Northwestern Women's Health Associates

your unique needs are our highest priority.

Making use of advanced technology and staying on the cutting edge of women’s healthcare, our team of experts is dedicated to providing every woman who visits our office with the highest level of sensitive, specialized care. At our office in Chicago, you can receive exceptional obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN) services from any one of our highly skilled doctors, including Stanley Friedell, MD; Marc Feldstein, MD; Abbie Roth, MD; Lisa Brunengraber, MD; Regina Belmonte, MD; Sharon Wise, MD; Julianne Morton, MD; Whitney Dunn, MD; and Aleena Lakhanpal, MD. With their combined expertise, this team of board-certified doctors at Northwestern Women's Health Associates makes it possible for you to receive efficient, personalized care from the preeminent women’s hospital in the Midwest.

Success Stories

  • 5 Star Review
    "Wonderful experience with Dr. Julianne Morton @ NW Women's Associates. I've recommended her to countless girlfriends. Being a first time mom, I went through many physical symptoms and emotions that accompany pregnancy. She is extremely thorough, patient, and has wonderful bedside manner. I felt confident going into delivery with Dr. Morton taking the lead with my delivery. Wonderful practice!"

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  • 5 Star Review
    "Dr. Morton is absolutely amazing. She cared for me throughout my first pregnancy and we found her to be kind and caring and straightforward - could not have asked for a better experience! Dr. Dunn ended up being on call during my delivery and she was great as well. I have always found the nurses and office staff to be friendly and on top of things - very happy with the practice!"

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  • 5 Star Review
    "I had to have a laproscopic hysterectomy done by Dr. Friedell and all went fabulously! They were very detailed in pre-op which made a lot of difference. I came out of surgery feeling great and post op I was back to work within two weeks. Everyone at the practice, at the hospital, at pre-op were incredible."

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  • 5 Star Review
    "Dr.Julianne Morton is amazing! I was recommended by a friend when I moved to the Chicago area and was looking for an OB-GYN. I have seen her for two years in Chicago for my yearly exam. She is beyond kind and great at what she does. Dr.Morton makes you feel very comfortable and is such an incredible doctor! I have recommended her to all of my friends as well who need a new gyno/OB-GYN."

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  • 5 Star Review
    "Dr. Morton is a really great doctor. She has an incredible bedside manner and makes you feel comfortable. She makes sure to ask if you have any questions and will happily answer all of them with you. Would highly recommend!"

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  • 5 Star Review
    "Dr. Friedell is amazing! He helped delivered my first baby and the whole process was super smooth and stress free. All the staff in the office are super friendly too. Highly recommend!"

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  • 5 Star Review
    "I visited Dr Feldstein office yesterday. All of his stuff was very kind and nice to me. He has a professional-team, so I know I have nothing to be afraid of. Just wanted to say thanks to all the people I meet. I am in good hands."

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  • 5 Star Review
    "Dr Freidell is extremely knowledgeable, thorough and really cares about his patients. He is very good at getting to the root of the problem, especially with overlapping symptoms. He guided me through all my options and their implications. I will highly recommend him and his team."

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  • 5 Star Review
    "I love Dr. Belmonte. I have been going to her since 2006! She rocks!!! She is straight to the point, I love that about her. When I leave her office after seeing her I always feel great, like a just left a good friends house or something!"
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  • 5 Star Review

    "I can not tell you how wonderful my experiences have been. Dr. Sharon Wise is my doctor and she is fantastic. She is straightforward and honest about treatments and procedures. I enjoy her sense of humor, and I found her bedside manner when delivering my son to be excellent. "

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