What is Chlamydia?

Chlamydia infection is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the bacteria Chlamydia Trachomatis. Chlamydia Trachomatis can cause a variety of genito-urinary infections such as lymphogranuloma venereum, non-gonococcal urethritis, mucopurulent cervicitis and epididymitis.

Chlamydia genital infections occur frequently among sexually active adolescents and young adults. Up to 80% of women will have no noticeable symptoms of an infection and may be mild. Chlamydia can affect both men and women.

Chlamydia is spread mainly via sexual intercourse – oral, vaginal and/or anal.

Incubation Period for Chlamydia

2 days to 2 weeks. May remain undetected for months or years.

Symptoms of Chlamydia

  • Vaginal Discharge
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Lower abdominal discomfort
  • Pain during urination / micturition or Dysuria
  • Asymptomatic
  • Chronic chlamydial infections can lead to complications like pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy and infertility

Testing for Chlamydia

  • Clinical signs and symptoms
  • Cervical, vaginal, urethral, anal or oral/pharyngeal swab tests ( culture or PCR )
  • Urine tests ( PCR )
  • Blood tests are generally not useful

Treatment for Chlamydia

Chlamydia can be treated with a single oral dose of antibiotics or a course of antibiotics for 7-14 days.

Follow Up for Chlamydia

Follow-up testing after 2 weeks is recommended to ensure that chlamydial infection has been completely cured.

Patients infected with Chlamydia should also be screened and tested for Syphillis and HIV.

Prevention of Chlamydia

Avoid multiple sex partners. All sex partners of infected patients in the last 3 months should be screened and treated accordingly.

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