Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series: Home Page Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series Back to FHI Website
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Introduction Contents Post-Test References Go To Presenter Info


Section 1
Section 2
Section 3

- Topics
- Introduction
- Objectives
- Approaches
- Laboratory
> Clinical
- Syndromic
- Syndromic
- Strengths
- Weaknesses
- Accuracy
- Genital Ulcer
- Algorithm
- Urethral
- Algorithm
- Vaginal
- Vaginitis
- Cervicitis
- Algorithms
- Algorithms
- Algorithms
- Abdominal
- Algorithm
- Algorithm
- Other Issues
- Treatment
- Screening
- The Four Cs
- Resources
- HIV Testing
- Vaccination
- Preliminary
- Summary


Previous pageNext page

Section 3 - STD Management

Clinical Approach without Laboratory Support

  • Based on clinical judgment

  • Least reliable method

  • Single STD is typically identified
    and treated

Slide 53

Clinical diagnosis is the traditional approach for identifying STDs when laboratory support is not available. It relies on a provider’s clinical judgment in assessing a person’s symptoms, signs and personal history. Clinical judgment is based on personal experience and knowledge of the field, which can vary greatly among providers. This is the least reliable approach.

The provider typically attempts to identify and treat a single STD. However, in many instances it is not possible for even an experienced provider to differentiate among the various infections based only on clinical experience. Thus, the provider could diagnose the infection incorrectly. Also, a client may have more than one infection, and a single diagnosis — even if correct — may not be complete. For example, after seeing a woman with a genital ulcer, a provider might diagnose either syphilis or chancroid. But the woman could have both infections. Treatment would not be complete and effective unless the client were treated for both infections.

When not sure of the diagnosis, an experienced clinician might realize that treating for a single infection is not sufficient and may treat for more than one infection.

This approach relies on symptoms and signs of infection and hence, cannot be used with asymptomatic persons.



Previous page      Next page