The genital test seems to be the discussion at the moment in Nigeria, thanks to the new RCCG memo that states that genital test should be included as part of the pre-marital examination for its members seeking to get married.
Prior to this time, genital test/examination is probably something a few of us aren’t aware of or something we probably do not pay attention to when it comes to our health and regular body checkup.
Let’s start by knowing what genital test and examination is.
A genital test, according to Wikibooks, is used to check for signs and symptoms that might indicate the presence of a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or to find any abnormalities that could indicate a more serious problem such as cancer.
Most people assume that they would know if they have any form of sexually transmitted infection but the truth is many of these STIs have no signs or symptoms in the majority of people infected or they have mild signs that can be easily overlooked. Little wonder, they are now being referred to as STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infection), not STDs (Sexually Transmitted Disease).
Why is it important to have your genitals tested or examined?
For instance in a society like ours, where a good number of us hardly pay attention to checking our health status from time to time, if left unchecked, these STIs can result in something even worse.
Example, chlamydia, if left untreated can cause an increased risk of contracting HIV, urethritis and/or infertility in men, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), and infertility, miscarriage, and/or pre-term labour in women.
Gonorrhoea can cause an increased risk of contracting HIV in men and women. Scarring of the Fallopian tubes, ectopic pregnancies or miscarriage, and infertility in women. Inflammation of the prostate, scarring of the urethra, and infertility in men.
Hepatitis B can cause jaundice, mild to severe liver infection, fibrosis and cirrhosis of the liver, liver failure, hepatocellular carcinoma (cancer), and even death.
These are only a few of the numerous STIs and the resulting consequences of not taking care of yourself. Hence, the need to get a genital test (either male or female).
For women, the genital test involves a pelvic exam which allows a doctor or health care provider to check the internal and external reproductive organs (the vulva (the outside of the vagina), the vagina, the cervix, the uterus, the fallopian tubes, and the ovaries) for signs of disease.
In men, it involves a visual and manual examination of the male genitals which includes the testicles, epididymis, spermatic cord, and vas deferens.
You can also conduct a genital self-exam by checking to see if there is anything new around your genitals like sores, discharge or bumps and lumps around the testes, for men.
Regardless of what type of genital test or examination you do, be sure to seek medical help once you notice/spot anything strange in your body.