Men who are sexually active need to take their penis health seriously. This includes regular checks to be sure they don’t have any sexually-transmitted infections (STIs). STIs  can have a negative impact on their own health, as well as that of their partners. Often, a man will go to his general practitioner or his urologist for a sexual health assessment. Sometimes, however, a man may opt to go to a clinic, instead.

Why Choose a Clinic?

There are numerous reasons why a person would choose a sexual health clinic, rather than going to their own doctor. For example:

  • They may feel shy or embarrassed about letting their long-time doctor know about their intimate practices.
  • Their doctor may not provide adequate testing.
  • They may have financial issues that make a clinic visit more appealing.
  • The clinic may process lab tests more quickly than a regular doctor’s office.

But what can a guy expect when he visits a sexual health clinic? This can vary from one clinic to another, but the following are typical of a clinic visit:

Forms

Expect to fill out forms, especially if this is the first visit. These will usually include a medical history. This is necessary so that doctors will be aware of issues that could affect the test results or recommended treatments. Usually, a clinic will also ask about drug and alcohol use.

Confidentiality

Clinics should respect a patient’s confidentiality, as does any doctor. However, many sexual health centers go a step further. While they typically do need to record a patient’s name, address, etc. in their records, they often assign a patient a number during that visit. The patient will be referred to by the number, rather than by his name, so that he may feel free to offer up uncensored information about his sexual status.

Penis Health Examinations

Because of the nature of STIs, examinations will usually include inspection of the penis, testicles and anus. In most cases, the doctor will need to touch these body parts and may also take samples for testing. Sometimes, the doctor will swab the urethra and/or the anus, as well as the throat, in order to check for gonorrhea or chlamydia. A patient may refuse to have certain parts touched. However, doing so may prevent the doctor from making an accurate assessment of the patient’s sexual health.

Lab Tests

Samples may be sent to an outside lab if the center does not have the ability to properly process them onsite.

Treatment

Most sexual health centers are able to offer treatments based on diagnoses made by the physicians. The specific treatments will depend upon each patient’s diagnoses. It is important to follow the doctor’s recommendations for treatment and to complete all medication regimens. If a patient tests positive for an STD, he should abstain from sexual contact with a partner until the doctor gives him the all-clear. His own penis health and his partners’ health depend on it.