Chlamydia: Symptoms, Complications, Testing, and Treatment
Chlamydia can often be asymptomatic, showing no evidence of infection at all. In other cases, symptoms will appear a few weeks after infected sexual contact. Symptoms of Chlamydia include painful, burning urination, unusual discharge from vagina or penis, burning or itching genitals, and in women, bleeding and stomach pain. Whether or not symptoms are present, if there is any chance of infection, proactive health measures should be taken.
Risks & Complications
If Chlamydia goes untreated, it will likely lead to serious complications. Potential risks involved with Chlamydia for women are inflammation of the cervix, urethra, and uterus, pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, chronic pelvic pain, infertility, ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, and preterm labor. In addition, major risks are posed to a newborn baby born to a mother with Chlamydia, including premature delivery, conjunctivitis, and nose, throat, ear, and lung infections. Risks of untreated Chlamydia in men include urethritis, inflammation of the tubes that hold sperm and inflammation of the prostate, and infertility. This risk of contracting HIV is also elevated while infected with Chlamydia. As mentioned previously, some cases of Chlamydia are void of symptoms. If there is any chance you may have been exposed to an STD, a urine test is strongly recommended to eliminate the potential for severe complications from unknown infection.
Being tested for Chlamydia is as simple and private as a routine urinalysis. A nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) will be performed to determine whether the DNA for chlamydia bacteria is present in the urine. Results are typically determined in 2-3 days. If a urine culture is sent off, the results will likely be available in 5-7 days. The results are very reliable, with a false positive extremely unlikely. It is possible to be tested when the infection is too early to be detected, so one should wait 1-3 weeks after possible exposure to ensure accurate results. In the event of a positive result, any and all sexual partners should automatically be tested and treated for the infection.
Treatment for Chlamydia is quite simple and effective. Chlamydia is easily treated with antibiotics. Individuals are instructed to abstain from any sexual activity for 7 days after finishing antibiotic treatment to prevent the spread of infection. Sexual partners who have transmitted the infection or one who has been exposed to the infection must also be treated before sexual activity resumes. Repeated infections are likely and common when sexual activity with a partner resumes without the partner having been treated. Any complications that have occurred due to Chlamydia before treatment are not reversible by treatment of the infection.
GET RESULTS QUICKLY
- You can get the STD test results quickly and confidentially on the same day and in the manner you wish to receive it. A doctor can be consulted for advice is the test result is positive.