Window Period. 14 days
Men: urine sample
Women: high-vaginal swab
+/- oral swab (where indicated)
Biological Marker. Ureaplasma urealyticum and parvum DNA (undifferentiated)
Accuracy. Approx. 99%
Time for test results. 4 working days (exc. sat/sun)
Testing for Ureaplasma is not recommended in healthy individuals who are showing no symptoms of a possible Ureaplasma infection. It is also important to remember that Ureaplasma can cause no underlying issues for most people, and it will not lead to any complications.
This test is the most accurate test currently available for the detection of both Ureaplasma urealyticum and Ureaplasma parvum. Your results will only tell us whether a Ureaplasma infection is present.
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In order to be most prepared and leave plenty of time for questions & discussions, we will ask you to fill out a simple questionnaire.
We will begin by assessing your medical & sexual history, any symptoms you may be experiencing and discuss any questions you may have.
If it is still appropriate to proceed with the Ureaplasma test (and you would like to), we will take a swab from the appropriate areas.
About The Test
How do you test for Ureaplasma?
A Ureaplasma PCR test is done using a high-vaginal swab for women and a urine sample for men. The sample is sent to an external laboratory to test for the DNA presence of Ureaplasma.
What is the difference between Ureaplasma Parvum and Ureaplasma Urealyticum?
There are 2 common species of Ureaplasma infections found in humans. They behave in a very similar fashion clinically, but can be distinguished from each other by genetic tests and other laboratory characteristics.
Of the 2 species of Ureaplasma, Ureaplasma urealyticum is more likely to be sexually transmitted and more likely to produce symptoms compared to Ureaplasma parvum.
When should I get tested for Ureaplasma?
The testing for Ureaplasma may be considered in the following situations:
- You are experiencing symptoms.
- Your partner has tested positive.
- As part of NSU investigation where all other test results are negative.
- As part of Cervicitis and PID work-up in the women where all other tests are negative.
- As part of investigation for recurrent bacterial vaginosis (BV) as Ureaplasma can be seen in 60-95% of patients with BV.
- As part of a complete STI screen where you want to know your ureaplasma status as a baseline.
What is the window period for Ureaplasma?
We recommend waiting 14 days after sexual contact before testing. If you are experiencing symptoms or your partner has tested positive, please attend without delay.
Will I need an examination to get tested for Ureaplasma?
An examination may be recommended if you have symptoms so that your clinician can promptly address and manage your symptoms and rule out any secondary complications.
If you do not have any symptoms but wish to test for Ureaplasma, an examination is not necessary. However, in the absence of any symptoms it is not generally recommended that you test for Ureaplasma. Your clinician will be able to explain this in more detail during your consultation.
How can I prepare for my Ureaplasma test?
Male patients will need to drink enough water and hold their urine for 2 hours before their appointment time. Female patients do not need to hold their urine as a high-vaginal swab will be taken instead.
There is no extra preparation required.
Is my Ureaplasma test confidential?
Yes. Everything you share with us is confidential and will not be shared with the NHS or anyone else unless you wish for us to do so.
About The Results
How will I receive my Ureaplasma test results?
You can receive your Ureaplasma test results by either text or email.
Do I have to take any precautions whilst waiting for my Ureaplasma test results?
It is essential that you practise safe-sex whilst waiting for your results. Your clinician will advise you on any extra precautions depending on your situation, your symptoms and if you are taking treatment.
What do my Ureaplasma test results mean?
The results will be either NOT Detected (i.e. negative) or DETECTED (i.e. positive).
In some cases, the test may come back as equivocal which means that it was not possible to gain a conclusive result from the sample given. If this happens, we will request another sample free of charge.
What happens if my Ureaplasma test is positive?
If your Ureaplasma test result is positive, you will be given a course of antibiotics to treat the infection. However, treatment may not always be necessary in those who do not have any symptoms. This is particularly so in cases where the Ureaplasma bacteria exists harmlessly in the body (i.e. is a commensal infection).
How do I know if the Ureaplasma I have got is ‘commensal’ or a ‘STI’?
It is not always easy or possible to work out if the Ureaplasma species you have is commensal or an STI. It is often narrowed down by assessing factors such as previous negative test results, a history of unprotected sexual contact, subsequent development of symptoms, and a resolution of symptoms after a course of antibiotics.
Typically, if you have been treated for Ureaplasma following a positive test result, and you are still testing positive for Ureaplasma, it may be classified as a commensal infection.
Do I have to tell my partner if I test positive for Ureaplasma?
Yes. It is essential to tell your sexual partners that you have tested positive for Ureaplasma so they can get tested and treated to avoid passing the infection onto others.
What if I have Ureaplasma during my pregnancy?
Pregnant people with an acquired infection should seek treatment as soon as possible after being diagnosed with Ureaplasma to avoid passing it on to the fetus via the womb or the baby during birth.
Evidence is limited, however, If transmission occurs through the womb, it can cause complications such as premature birth, still birth, risk of miscarriage and premature rupture of the membranes.
If transmission occurs during birth, it can cause complications for the baby such as meningitis, brain injury, pneumonia, breathing issues and injury to the lungs.
Can I get a certificate of my Ureaplasma test results?
Yes. Along with a text or email of your Ureaplasma test results, we can email a certificate for official purposes. You will need to bring along your passport or driving licence for proof of identity.
Sexual Health Consultation (inc. in test) £75
Ureaplasma Test (inc. consultation) £200
Ureaplasma Test (as Drop & Go) £140
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Reviewed by: Aaron Williams
Written By: Shannon Abraham
Last reviewed date: 29 March 2023
Next review due: 29 March 2026
Whilst this content is written and reviewed by sexual health specialists, it is for general guidance only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your clinician.
References & Further Reading
- Medscape: Diagnosis and Treatment of Ureaplasma Infection
- European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology: Should we be testing for urogenital Mycoplasma hominis, Ureaplasma parvum and Ureaplasma urealyticum in men and women? – a position statement from the European STI Guidelines Editorial Board
- The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics: Molecular Methods for the Detection of Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma Infections in Humans
- Journal of Clinical Microbiology: Species Identification and Subtyping of Ureaplasma parvum and Ureaplasma urealyticum Using PCR-Based Assays