Chlamydia Infection

Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted disease (STD) that is easily treatable. If left untreated, it can cause serious adverse effects later on especially in women.

How is Chlamydia spread?

It is spread through sexual intercourse with another individual who has the infection. Highest transmission through unprotected sexual intercourse. If your sex partner is male, you can still get chlamydia although he does not ejaculate. Prior treated infections of chlamydia can recur if a person is exposed to the bacteria again. Pregnant mothers can transmit the infection to their baby as well during childbirth.

Prevention of Chlamydia infection

⦁ Sexually active individuals should practice having sex with a condom.
⦁ Be in a long term mutually monogamous relationship with both partners tested to be negative for Chlamydia infection.

Symptoms of Chlamydia Infection

Women with symptoms may notice:
⦁ Abnormal vaginal discharge
⦁ Burning or tingling sensation when urinating

Men with symptoms may notice:
⦁ Penile discharge
⦁ Burning or tingling sensation when urinating
⦁ Pain and swelling in one or both testicles

Men and women may get infected with Chlamydia in their anus/rectum. Symptoms that may develop include:
⦁ Rectal pain
⦁ Discharge from the anus
⦁ Bleeding

INVESTIGATIONS T O DIAGNOSE CHLAMYDIA

Your doctor will be able to diagnose Chlamydia infection by:
⦁ Urine test
⦁ Dry cotton swab test- from the affected part of the genitalia
⦁ Blood test

TREATMENT FOR CHLAMYDIA INFECTION

Chlamydia is cause by the bacteria called Chlamydia trachomatis. Antibiotics is the most effective way to treat it. It is fairly simple to treat and requires a 1 week course of antibiotics. Repeat infection with Chlamydia is common. Patients are recommended to be retested in 3 months after completing the treatment. During the course of the antibiotics, patients are advised to abstain from sexual intercourse for at least 1 week. Both sexual partners should be treated for it at the same time.

RISKS IF UNTREATED

Early stages of the infection are often unnoticed and patients may even have the infection for months without symptoms. However, it can lead to serious health problems.
Women who are untreated can cause the infection to spread to the uterus and fallopian tubes (tubes that carry fertilised eggs from the ovaries to uterus). This causes pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). PID often has no symptoms, however some women may have abdominal and pelvic pain. PID causes irreversible damage to the reproductive organs.

Men rarely have health problems linked to chlamydia. Infection sometimes spreads to the tube that carries sperm from the testicles. Chlamydia infection in men does not cause infertility.

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