Ask Me Anything (Part 4)

Ask Me Anything:

Yet again we had a great response to the “Ask me Anything” series. It is clear that there are definitely some questions that you are more comfortable asking via Facebook vs. face to face.

Question #1: “I’m not proud of this but I recently had sex (unprotected) with someone and now have heard that they may have an STD… Should I go get tested immediately or wait?”

~ I’ll save my “always, always, wear a condom lecture because you obviously already know that. I also realize mistakes happen and the best course of action from here on out is to be proactive. You will want to get tested for all STD’s (not just the one(s) you think your partner has. You can start with getting tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea within a week or two of exposure and can be done with a urine test. You can get tested for HIV 3 months after exposure and then again at 6 months since the virus can take that long to show on a test. HPV is a bit trickier and usually hard to determine where it originated since it can hide up to 3 years. It is recommended to get a yearly PAP test for all sexually active women. If you are worried about pregnancy from this unprotected sex you will want to look into the day after pill (but time is of the essence and is more effective the sooner it is taken).

Question #2: “My nipples have randomly and unpredictably started to “leak” which is the best way I can describe it. It is never a lot of fluid and I’m not pregnant or breast feeding (I haven’t been for about 8 yrs so I know it’s not that). What else could it be?”

~ This is not as uncommon as you think but before I make any explanation I want to encourage you to visit either your family doctor or gynecologist when you have any sudden or abnormal changes in your breasts. This isn’t to say you should automatically panic. Breast discharge can come from a number of different causes. You’ve already eliminated pregnancy and breast feeding but nipples can still discreet fluid when they are stimulated or even chafing from a tight sports bra. It could also be due to an infection (also known as mastitis) which is more common in pregnant/breastfeeding women but can occur in anyone. Galactorrhea is another possibility which is where a woman’s breast secretes milk or milky discharge even though she is not breastfeeding. This can be caused by pituitary gland issues, certain medications, and even some herbs. Mammary duct ectasia is another possibliity typically seen in women who are approaching menopause.
Most nipple discharge is normal or caused by a benign medical condition. There are a few instances though where discharge could be linked to breast cancer (especially if it is accompanied by any lumps or skin discolorations).

Question #3: “Do I really need to go pee after having sex?”

~ I know it doesn’t sound romantic but getting up to urinate after sex greatly helps to prevent a UTI. A woman’s urethra is short and secretions containing bacteria can travel up the urethra causing a bladder infection (UTI). Going to the bathroom can help flush this bacteria out.

Question #4: “My new boyfriend has warts on his hands (he said he’s always had them)… could this be spread to my vaginal area?”

~ This is a good question with not a very definite answer. It is very unlikely that the warts on his hand could give you genital warts since there are over 100 types of HPV strands. Only certain types of HPV can affect certain parts of the body. With that being said there may still be a very slim risk and the best way to prevent it is to keep his hands away from your genitalia or have him wear protection such as rubber latex gloves.