Chlamydia And Gonorrhea: Screening
Recommendations made by the USPSTF are independent of the U.S. government. They should not be construed as an official position of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Chlamydia and gonorrhea are among the most common sexually transmitted infections in the US.1 Approximately 1.8 million cases of chlamydia and more than 600,000 cases of gonorrhea were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2019. The rate of chlamydia infection among women was nearly double the rate among men . Gonorrhea infection was more prevalent in men than in women . Infection rates are highest among adolescents and young adults of both sexes. In 2019 almost two-thirds of all reported chlamydia infections, and in 2018 more than half of new gonococcal infections, were among persons aged 15 to 24 years.1,2
The US Preventive Services Task Force concludes with moderate certainty that screening for chlamydia in all sexually active women 24 years or younger and in women 25 years or older who are at increased risk for infection has moderate net benefit.
The USPSTF concludes with moderate certainty that screening for gonorrhea in all sexually active women 24 years or younger and in women 25 years or older who are at increased risk for infection has moderate net benefit.
What Are Chlamydia Symptoms
Chlamydia in women and people with female reproductive organs is often asymptomatic. This means that people often do not experience any discomfort or notice any changes while infected.
Without any symptoms, people may be infected and not know it. Some people may have very mild or vague symptoms after they are infected, which can be confused with a urinary tract infection or vaginal infection .
What Is The Outlook For People With Gonorrhea
People who get prompt treatment and follow treatment instructions carefully can resume their normal lives. Untreated gonorrhea can cause several long-term health problems. Gonorrhea can even be life-threatening without proper care.
Complications in women
In people assigned female at birth, untreated gonorrhea can:
- Spread to other reproductive organs, including your uterus and fallopian tubes, and cause pelvic inflammatory disease. PID can cause infertility and ectopic pregnancies, which can be life-threatening to the mother and the baby.
- Cause eye problems in infants born to untreated birthing parents, leading to blindness.
- Spread to other body parts, causing swollen and painful joints, liver inflammation, and heart valve and brain damage.
Complications in men
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What Are The Risks Of Chlamydia Or Gonorrhea During Pregnancy
- Miscarriage: some studies have found a link between chlamydia infection and miscarriage, which is a spontaneous loss of pregnancy before the baby is viable outside of the womb. Researchers believe it could be due to inflammation of the placenta caused by bacteria, as well as the rupture of membranes.
- Stillbirth: bacterial infections, including chlamydia and gonorrhea, might cause stillbirth , even though more research is needed to confirm this risk.
- Preterm delivery: which is when a baby is born before the 37th week of pregnancy. This can be problematic as the earlier a baby is delivered the higher the risk of health complications.
What Are The Complications Of Chlamydia Infection
Because chlamydia does not show symptoms in everyone that is infected, it can easily cause long term problems in both men and women. If treatment does not occur early some of this complications are possible.
- Pelvic inflammatory disease . This is an ascending infection that affects the fallopian tubes, ovaries, uterus and abdomen. It can cause severe pain and infertility in women.
- Peri-hepatitis. This is due to inflammation of the covering of the liver.
- In children, chlamydia can cause red eyes and pneumonia.
- If the fallopian tubes are affected, the baby may grow outside the uterus. This will cause severe pain or fainting attack if it ruptures
- Infertility or inability to conceive
- Increased chance of contacting other sexually transmitted infections like HIV, Gonorrhea, Trichomoniasis.
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Can Gonorrhea Be Cured
Yes. Prompt treatment can cure gonorrhea. Take all medicine as your healthcare provider instructs, even if your symptoms improve and you start to feel better. Also, never take someone elses medicine to treat your illness. Doing so makes the infection harder to treat.
Taking all antibiotics as prescribed is always important, but its especially important with gonorrhea. Gonorrhea is curable now, but its becoming more resistant to antibiotics. Some forms of gonorrhea that have developed a high level of antibiotic resistance are commonly referred to as super gonorrhea.
To ensure that gonorrhea remains curable, its more important than ever that everyone take medications as prescribed and that everyone takes steps to prevent infection.
How Is Gonorrhea Treated
Youll need antibiotics to treat gonorrhea. Your partner will need treatment, too. The CDC currently recommends a shot of Ceftriaxone, with dosage based on your weight:
- 500 milligrams of Ceftriaxone if you weigh less than 150 kilograms .
- 1 gram of Ceftriaxone if you weigh more than 150 kilograms.
If youre allergic to Cetriaxone, your healthcare provider may give you a shot of Gentamicin plus 2 grams of Azithromycin. Youll take Azithromycin by mouth .
Your provider may prescribe additional medication, like doxycycline, to clear a co-infection with chlamydia. Follow your providers instructions on what medications to take and when.
Its important to consider what treatment can and cant do. Treatment can rid your body of the bacteria. Treatment cant:
- Undo any damage to your body that the infection may have caused before treatment.
- Protect you from future gonorrhea infections.
Its important to take preventive steps to protect yourself after treatment so that you dont get re-infected.
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What Are The Treatments For Chlamydia
Antibiotics will cure the infection. You may get a one-time dose of the antibiotics, or you may need to take medicine every day for 7 days. Antibiotics cannot repair any permanent damage that the disease has caused.
To prevent spreading the disease to your partner, you should not have sex until the infection has cleared up. If you got a one-time dose of antibiotics, you should wait 7 days after taking the medicine to have sex again. If you have to take medicine every day for 7 days, you should not have sex again until you have finished taking all of the doses of your medicine.
It is common to get a repeat infection, so you should get tested again about three months after treatment.
Symptoms Of Gonorrhea In Women
Many women donât have noticeable gonorrhea symptoms. If they do, the symptoms can be mild or mimic the symptoms of other infections. Symptoms of gonorrhea in women can resemble yeast infections, other bacterial infections, or urinary tract infectionsâwhich is why itâs important to regularly test for STIs like gonorrhea.
If a woman isnât treated for gonorrhea, the infection can damage the reproductive system and increase the risk of getting or transmitting HIV. It can also lead to pelvic inflammatory disease or infertility. In some rare cases, gonorrhea can spread to the bloodstream and joints, which is known as disseminated gonorrhea.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Chlamydia In Women
The symptoms of Chlamydia in women are rarely noticeable. Professionals reveal that among a huge number of patients, only 30% females show symptoms related to this disease and rest all suffer from silent infection. In case if symptoms of the disease are present in the body then the person will notice them within 3 weeks right from their occurrence.
Some of the major symptoms associated with Chlamydia disease are:
What To Do To Reduce The Risk
It is never easy to deal with gonorrhea symptoms in women, and it takes time to treat it properly. Therefore, it is better to take certain steps to avoid having it in the first place. Here is what you can try:
Practice Safer Sex
The most important thing to prevent gonorrhea is to avoid unprotected sex. Here are a few tips to consider:
- It is important to avoid sexual intercourse with someone who shows visible signs of an STI. You should also avoid it if you know you have a sexually transmitted infection.
- Limit yourself to your partner. Having more than one sexual relationship simultaneously increases your risk of catching a sexually transmitted infection.
- Be sure to use condom whenever engaging in sex. The use of condom lowers your risk of getting HIV Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and many other sexually transmitted infections.
- Always use a new condom when having sex unless you are absolutely sure that your partner does not have any sexually transmitted infection.
- Be sure to use condoms even if you are using another birth control method. Birth control pills and other methods prevent unwanted pregnancy but offer no protection against sexually transmitted infections. Therefore, you should still be wearing condoms when engaging in sexual activities.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Chlamydia
Chlamydia doesn’t usually cause any symptoms. So you may not realize that you have it. People with chlamydia who have no symptoms can still pass the disease to others. If you do have symptoms, they may not appear until several weeks after you have sex with an infected partner.
Symptoms in women include:
If the infection spreads, you might get lower abdominal pain, pain during sex, nausea, or fever.
Symptoms in men include:
- A burning sensation when urinating
- Pain and swelling in one or both testicles
If the chlamydia infects the rectum , it can cause rectal pain, discharge, and/or bleeding.
What Are The Symptoms Of Gonorrhea
Like chlamydia infections, gonorrhea can infect people of all genders. Gonorrhea is often asymptomatic in women and people with female reproductive tractsâthis means that people often do not experience any discomfort or notice any changes once infected .
Without any symptoms, people may not suspect that they have an STI. Some may have very mild or vague symptoms, which can be confused with a urinary tract infection or vaginal infection . In women and people with female reproductive tracts, these symptoms can include increased , frequent painful urination, spotting/bleeding between periods or after vaginal intercourse or pain, bleeding, or discharge in the rectum .
Infections of gonorrhea in the throat are also often asymptomatic, though some people may have a sore throat and enlarged tonsils .
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Its Not Uncommon To Have Gonorrhea And Chlamydia At The Same Time
Research has shown that up to 50% of all teens and young adults who tested positive for gonorrhea at STD clinics, family planning centers and juvenile detention centers also had chlamydia. Adalja says this can happen simply because individuals who have gonorrhea are also likely to have risk factors for chlamydia and vice versa. And, he points out, They are both transmitted in the same manner and have the same risks for acquisition.
Here Is What You Need To Know About Chlamydia And Gonorrhea
January 20, 2022 by Elodie Takamiya
Chlamydia is the most reported sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Its relative, gonorrhea, is the second most common STI. Both are caused by bacteria and can have disastrous, long-term consequences on a womans health. This is especially the case if she doesnt receive treatment immediately. In this article, you will find useful information that will help you to be proactive with your health. Without further ado, here is what you need to know about chlamydia and gonorrhea.
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Home Testing Is Possible
There are definitely at-home tests that are accurate, says Dombrowski. They are easy-to-use and hard to mess up, but the problem is that the kits often cost a lot of money.
Furthermore, she says that while you can test yourself at home, if the test is positive, you cannot buy the antibiotics that you need to treat the illness over the counter. You will need a prescription from a doctor or other healthcare provider. Also, you will need to retest yourself three months after the treatment ends.
Herpes Symptoms In Women
Herpes simplex virusesmore commonly called herpesis a viral infection that causes sores around the mouth or genitals . You can get herpes from kissing or through any form of sexual contact. Its spread through skin-to-skin contact with sores, or the mouth, or genitals of somebody who has herpes, as well as infected body fluids like saliva and genital secretions.
Most women with genital herpes dont know they have it, and some can go months or even years without showing symptoms. If you do get symptoms, they usually show up within 2-12 days of infection and can sometimes be mistaken for something else, like pimples or ingrown hair.6 The first outbreak can be the most severe and uncomfortable.
Herpes symptoms in women include:
- A tingling, burning, or itching sensation where blisters will form
- Small blisters that pop and become painful, open sores before scabbing over
- In the mouth area, like on the lips or gums or inside the cheeks
- Less commonly, on other parts of the body
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Effects Of Chlamydia And Gonorrhea
Sexually transmitted diseases have several consequences, including health effects and emotional effects. Several STDs have mild or unnoticeable symptoms, so the advance in the body, causing more damage than those detected early. Lack of awareness of STDs makes people more vulnerable since some women may ignore some mild symptoms, thinking its just a normal bacterial infection that will go away after a few days. Below are some effects of STDs:
Many People With Gonorrhea Dont Have Symptoms
Most men and women with gonorrhea are asymptomatic meaning, they dont have symptoms, the CDC says. The reason for this likely comes down to individual immune responses, Adalja says. Some peoples immune systems dont have a strong response to the bacteria and, as a result, dont trigger symptoms, he explains.
Because many people with gonorrhea may go undiagnosed, the true number of those who are asymptomatic is not known, Dr. Nancy Phillips, associate professor at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and director of the Center for Vulvovaginal Health, tells Yahoo Life.
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Gonorrhea And Chlamydia: Knowing The Difference
Medically reviewed by Neka Miller, PhD on March 26, 2020. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.
Both gonorrhea and chlamydia are sexually transmitted infections that share a number of similarities. TheyÃ¢re both very common STIs . Their symptoms often resemble each other. And they can both have long-term health consequences if they arenÃ¢t treated. So whatÃ¢s the difference between these two?
Keep reading for a closer look at the symptoms of chlamydia vs. gonorrhea, how they can affect your health, and how you can check for both STIs with a single chlamydia and gonorrhea test you can take at home.
Chlamydia: Frequently Asked Questions
What is chlamydia?
Chlamydia is a bacterial infection, caused by Chlamydia trachomatis, which results in substantial morbidity and economic cost worldwide. It is the most common bacterial sexually transmitted infection worldwide. Different strains of C. trachomatis cause genital infections , lymphogranuloma venereum a genital ulcer disease that affects lymphoid tissue-, and trachoma .
How common is chlamydia?
The World Health Organization estimates that in 2012, 131 million new cases of chlamydia infections happened among adults and youth aged 1549 years worldwide, with around 128 million cases already present. The highest number of cases are found in WHO Region of the Americas and the WHO Western Pacific Region.
In the region of the Americas there were around 17.8 million new cases for females and 7 million for men in 2012, adding to the already around 18.8 million existing cases for females and 4.5 million existing cases for males. In many countries, the number of chlamydia is highest among girls aged 1519 years, followed by young women aged 20-24 years.
10-40% of people infected with gonorrhea is also infected with chlamydia.
How is chlamydia spread?
How chlamydia can be prevented?
What are the symptoms of chlamydia?
What are the problems of chlamydia?
In men health problems are less common, but the most common one is inflammation of the tube that stores and carries sperm. Rarely this can lead to inability to have a baby.
How is chlamydia diagnosed?
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Leads To Infertility In Women
Several cases of infertility have been observed till now and most of them use to happen just because of untreated Chlamydia. Whenever Chlamydia infection attacks a woman then it often creates trouble at uterus opening. Note that if this condition is ignored so long then bacterium starts traveling towards fallopian tube and then to ovaries.
This disease also causes harm to the hairs around the fallopian tube so the egg is not able to find guidance from ovaries towards womb. Such kind of damage leads to scars and slowly the tube may get blocked. This blockage is a major reason behind infertility. Some professionals have also reported the presence of ectopic pregnancy in Chlamydia affected women so it is really important to get it treated on time so that complications can be avoided.
Possible Treatment For Chlamydia
As per medical professionals, Chlamydia can be easily treated with the help of antibiotic therapy. These antibiotics can be assigned for the 7-day course with a single dose per day. It is essential to stay away from sexual activity for these 7 days so that infection can be controlled with ease and your partner does not get infected with it.
The commonly known antibiotics for this chlamydia in women treatment are Doxycycline and Azithromycin but professionals may also recommend few other antibiotics for this treatment. In case if the lady affected with Chlamydia is pregnant that few other antibiotics can also be used as like ethyl succinate, erythromycin, and amoxicillin but pregnant ladies should not consume doxycycline. It is also essential to make your partner aware about the disease and bring him to the medical professional to undergo important tests.
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