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HIV & stis in the LGBTQ+ community

Find out what you need to do to reduce your risk of contracting and spreading sexually transmitted infections.


Sexually transmitted diseases don’t discriminate, but some sexual practices put you at higher risk than others.

This means that some members of the LGBTQ+ community are at higher risk of contracting infections. But if you practice safe sex, get checked regularly and know what signs to look out for, you have nothing to worry about.

sexually transmitted infections (or stis)

NHS statistics show that 1 in 4 of men who have sex with men are unaware of their positive HIV status and research also suggests that those in the LGBTQ+ community have a higher chance of contracting HPV (Human Papillomavirus Virus), which emphasises the importance of regular check-ups and testing with your local sexual health clinic.

signs, symptoms and what to look out for

Three of the most common sexually transmitted infections for those who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community are HIV, Chlamydia and Syphilis. Below there is a brief overview of the symptoms of these STIs, however this is not an exhaustive list. Get more information about STIs and symptoms here.

hiv and aids
  1. Flu-like symptoms (e.g. fever, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes)
  2. Sores around the mouth, anus or genitals
  3. Rapid weight loss
  1. Unusual vaginal discharge or discharge from the penis
  2. Painful urination
  3. Itching on vagina or penis
  1. Small, painless ulcers around the vagina, penis or anus
  2. Red, itchy rash on palms of hands or soles of feet
  3. White patches in the mouth


These services are open to everyone. Order STI test kits online or go into a clinic if you are experiencing symptoms of an STI.