BASHH | STI screening for men who have sex with men

This statement from BASHH advises on routine screening for STIs in men who have sex with men. Although routine screening should be done via GU, it may be that we are aware of a man at risk who does not want to attend GU and then we would need to offer what testing we can.

What should be tested for:

  • Gonorrhoea
  • Chlamydia
  • Syphilis
  • HIV
  • Hep B
  • Hep C (if at risk)

How should these be tested for?

  • Clinician taken swabs from urethra/pharynx/rectum).
  • Self-taken samples (but evidence base for use is limited)
  • First pass urine instead of urethral swab
  • Blood test

When should patients be tested?

  • At least annually
  • Every 3m if
    • New partner and unprotected oral or anal sex
    • New diagnosis of STI
    • High risk behaviour (eg drug use)

NB if an STI is diagnosed, there should be an automatic recall system after 3m.


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