Know the STI: Chlamydia

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Chlamydia is a bacterial infection; it is common and can be easily cured with the use of antibiotics. It is caused by Chlamydia trachomatis. It is found most frequently in sexually active adolescents and young adults. The infection is asymptomatic in both men and women.
In women, it can infect the fallopian tubes,

cervix, urethra and Bartholin’s glands. An untreated infection can lead to pelvic inflammatory Disease (PID), infertility, and ectopic pregnancy.

In men, it can lead to epididymitis and infertility. It is also associated with an increased risk of acquiring and transmitting HIV infection.

How does one get infected?

Occurs commonly through vaginal sex. It can also occur through anal and oral sex; It is carried through vaginal fluids and semen.

It also infects the penis, vagina, cervix, anus, urethra, eyes, and throat.

Symptoms

Thin or mucopurulent vaginal discharge, cervical ectropia. Friable cervix (bleeds easily), burning and frequency of urination, and lower abdominal pain.
Sexual partners should be treated and abstain from sex for 7 days. Repeat testing is recommended 3 weeks after completion of the prescribed medication as a test of cure.
Due to it being asymptomatic it is advised to always go for testing annually
All sexually active adolescent females and women aged 20-25 even if they are asymptomatic.
Women over age 25 who are at risk for Chlamydia (history of STI, multiple sex partners. New sex partner, inconsistent use of barrier contraceptive.
Screening for high-risk pregnant women at their first prenatal visit or during the third trimester of pregnancy, or both, practitioners routinely screen all pregnant women.

Pregnancy

Screening for high-risk pregnant women at their first prenatal visit or during the third trimester of pregnancy, or both, is highly recommended.
Newborn exposure to Chlamydia in the birth canal is the most common cause of Ophthalmia neonatorum, chlamydial conjunctivitis and also the newborn may develop chlamydial pneumonia.

Symptoms

Thin or mucopurulent discharge, cervical ectropia. Friable cervix (bleeds easily), burning and frequency of urination, and lower abdominal pain.
Sexual partners should be treated and abstain from sex for 7 days. Repeat testing is recommended 3 weeks after completion of the prescribed medication as a test of cure.
Due to it being asymptomatic it is advised to always go for testing annually
All sexually active adolescent females and women aged 20-25 even if they are asymptomatic.
Women over age 25 who are at risk for Chlamydia (history of STI, multiple sex partners. New sex partner, inconsistent use of barrier contraceptive.
Screening for high-risk pregnant women at their first prenatal visit or during the third trimester of pregnancy, or both, practitioners routinely screen all pregnant women.

Treatment

It is treated with the use of antibiotics, your doctor or nurse would determine what would be used for treatment. Abstinence is advised during the 7 days following treatment. Also, it is advised that all sexual partners are treated to prevent reinfection.

post compiled from:

Centre for disease control and prevention(2018). Chlamydia- CDC fact sheet. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov
NHS Choices(2018). Trichomoniasis. Retrieved from http://www.nhs.uk
olds maternal, newborn nursing and women’s health across the lifespan(2015)

Planned Prenthood(2018). Chlamydia. https://www.plannedparenthood.org

One Reply to “Know the STI: Chlamydia”

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