Do I Need To Have A Test To Check That The Chlamydia Has Gone
If you take the treatment according to the instructions, you wont usually need a test to check the chlamydia has gone.
If youre aged under 25, you should be offered a repeat test 3 months after finishing the treatment. This is because youre at a higher risk of getting chlamydia again.
Whatever your age, you may need a repeat test or more treatment if:
- you think youve come into contact with chlamydia again
- you had sex without a condom with a partner before the treatment for both of you was finished
- you didnt complete the treatment or didnt take it according to the instructions
- the signs and symptoms dont go away
- your test was negative but you develop signs or symptoms of chlamydia
- youre pregnant.
A repeat test can be done 56 weeks after the first test.
If the chlamydia was in your rectum , you may need another test around 3 weeks after finishing the treatment. Your doctor, nurse or clinic will let you know if you need another test.
You can go back to the doctor, nurse or clinic if you have any questions or need advice on how to protect yourself from infection in the future.
You Can Get Chlamydia More Than Once
With some diseases, having one infection makes you immune to future infections. Thats not the case with chlamydia. If you engage in sexual activity with a person who has a chlamydia infection, you can get it again, even if youve just completed treatment for it.
Both partners should be treated before reinitiating sexual intercourse to prevent relapse, Schaffir says.
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Treatment For Chlamydia Is Quick And Easy
Two antibiotics are most often used for treating chlamydia:
- Azithromycin The main treatment for chlamydia is one gram of azithromycin, taken one time, says , deputy director of clinical services for public health with the Seattle and King County HIV and STD Program in Washington. That one gram comes as either two pills or four pills. It is not expensive.
- Doxycycline If your doctor prescribes doxycycline, you will take two pills daily for one week. It costs somewhat more than azithromycin.
Antibiotics can also cure chlamydia in infants, who can get the infection from their mothers, and treatment is essential for them. Without treatment, infants infected with chlamydia can develop conjunctivitis, which can cause blindness, or pneumonia, which can be fatal.
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I Was Treated For Chlamydia When Can I Have Sex Again
You should not have sex again until you and your sex partner have completed treatment. If your doctor prescribes a single dose of medication, you should wait seven days after taking the medicine before having sex. If your doctor prescribes a medicine for you to take for seven days, you should wait until you have taken all of the doses before having sex.
In Men Untreated Chlamydia Can Lead To:
- Epididymitis painful inflammation of the inner structures of the testicles, which may cause reduced fertility or sterility. A rare complication of Epididymitisis reactive arthritis, which causes pain in the inflamed joints that can be disabling
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Treating Other Types Of Chlamydial Infections
Two other conditions caused by Chlamydia trachomatis are uncommon in the United States, but very common worldwide:
- Lymphogranuloma venereum : Lymphogranuloma venereum is treated in the same way as standard genital chlamydia infections, but a longer course of therapy is used . Other care may also be required to treat genital ulcers or abscessed inguinal nodes if they occur.
- Trachoma: Trachoma is the leading preventable cause of blindness worldwide and often requires aggressive treatment with antibiotics and surgery addressing unsanitary living conditions is also necessary.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Chlamydia
If you do notice symptoms, youll likely experience them differently based on your reproductive anatomy. Many of the symptoms that cisgender women experience can also affect transgender men and nonbinary individuals with vaginas. Many of the symptoms that cisgender men notice can affect transgender women and nonbinary individuals with penises, too.
- Pus in your urine .
- Increased need to pee.
- Dull pain in the lower part of your abdomen.
Chlamydia bacteria most often infect your urethra, causing symptoms that are similar to nongonococcal urethritis. You may notice:
- Pain or a burning sensation when you pee .
Signs of chlamydia that all genders may notice
Chlamydia can affect parts of your body other than your reproductive organs, such as your:
- You may notice pain, discomfort, bleeding or a mucus-like discharge from your bottom.
- Throat. You may have a sore throat, but you usually wont notice symptoms if the bacterias in your throat.
- Eyes. You may notice symptoms of conjunctivitis if C. trachomatis bacteria gets in your eye. Symptoms include redness, pain and discharge.
See your healthcare provider immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
What Does A Chlamydia Test Involve
- You may be asked to provide a urine sample. Before having this test, youre advised not to pass urine for 12 hours.
- A doctor or nurse may take a swab from the entrance of the urethra .
- If you have symptoms of conjunctivitis swabs will be used to collect a sample of discharge from your eye.
A swab looks a bit like a cotton bud but is smaller and rounded. It sometimes has a small plastic loop on the end rather than a cotton tip. Its wiped over the parts of the body that could be infected. This only takes a few seconds and isnt painful, though it may be uncomfortable for a moment.
Cervical screening and routine blood tests dont detect chlamydia.
If youre not sure whether youve been tested for chlamydia, just ask.
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How To Get Rid Of Chlamydia In Males
Chlamydia in males is caused by a bacterial infection. This infection is mostly treated with oral antibiotics. The most effective and recommended treatment for chlamydia is the prescribing of Azithromycin or Doxycycline. After treatment, usually the infection will clear in 7 to 14 days. The recommended dosage should be finished for infection to be completely cleared. For treatment to be most effective, it is recommended that both partner complete treatment and abstain from any sexual contact for at least 7 days after completing their treatment.
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How Is It Treated
Chlamydia is treated with antibiotics. It is important that you take all the pills you are given. You may be given pills for seven to 10 days or you may be given pills for just one day.
- if you could be pregnant please tell the nurse or doctor so you are given the correct antibiotics
- tell the nurse or doctor if you are allergic to any antibiotics
- it is best to have another test 3 months after treatment to check you have not got chlamydia again.
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What Happens If I Dont Get Treated
The initial damage that chlamydia causes often goes unnoticed. However, chlamydia can lead to serious health problems.
If you are a woman, untreated chlamydia can spread to your uterus and fallopian tubes . This can cause pelvic inflammatory disease . PID often has no symptoms, however some women may have abdominal and pelvic pain. Even if it doesnt cause symptoms initially, PID can cause permanent damage to your reproductive system. PID can lead to long-term pelvic pain, inability to get pregnant, and potentially deadly ectopic pregnancy .
Men rarely have health problems linked to chlamydia. Infection sometimes spreads to the tube that carries sperm from the testicles, causing pain and fever. Rarely, chlamydia can prevent a man from being able to have children.
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Who Should Be Tested For Chlamydia
You should go to your health provider for a test if you have symptoms of chlamydia, or if you have a partner who has a sexually transmitted disease. Pregnant women should get a test when they go to their first prenatal visit.
People at higher risk should get checked for chlamydia every year:
- Sexually active women 25 and younger
- Older women who have new or multiple sex partners, or a sex partner who has a sexually transmitted disease
- Men who have sex with men
Get Retested Following Treatment
Many people have more than one chlamydia infection. If youre a girl or woman and your sex partners are not treated for the infection, you will be at high risk for reinfection. Repeated infections with chlamydia make it much more likely that your ability to have children will be affected. Repeated infections also raise your risk of painful complications, such as pelvic inflammatory disease.
Both women and men with chlamydia should be retested about three months after they are first diagnosed and treated. Go to be retested even if you think your sex partners were successfully treated.
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Can Chlamydia Be Cured
Yes, chlamydia can be cured with the right treatment. It is important that you take all of the medication your doctor prescribes to cure your infection. When taken properly it will stop the infection and could decrease your chances of having complications later on. You should not share medication for chlamydia with anyone.
Repeat infection with chlamydia is common. You should be tested again about three months after you are treated, even if your sex partner was treated.
Doxycycline More Effective Than Azithromycin For Chlamydia
Trial finds doxycycline slightly more effective, but researchers not entirely convinced of its superiority.
National Cancer Institute / Science Photo Library
Standard treatment for chlamydia is a single dose of azithromycin or a weeks course of doxycycline twice daily. However, evidence suggests that azithromycin may not be as effective as doxycycline.
To establish efficacy, US researchers randomly assigned adolescents with urogenital Chlamydia trachomatis infection to azithromycin or doxycycline . The participants were residents at youth correctional facilities, which made the chances of reinfection low, say the researchers.
The efficacy of doxycycline was 100%, compared with 97% for azithromycin. The results meant that azithromycin was not deemed as clinically effective as doxycycline.
However, writing in TheNew England Journal of Medicine , the researchers say that the exceptional efficacy of doxycycline may be offset by poorer adherence to the week-long regimen in real-world settings.
Condom Use During The Treatment Period
- Avoid having sex without a condom during treatment because the infection can still be transmitted. Use condoms for 7 days after the start of treatment and until 7 days after all current sexual contacts have been treated.
- If you are on a combined oral contraceptive pill, use a condom for 14 days when having sex, as antibiotics can affect the reliability of the contraceptive pill.
After completing the treatment, phone your doctor or return to the clinic for a follow-up after 3 months to check you have not been re-infected.
How Do I Know If I Have Chlamydia
If you suspect you have chlamydia, your doctor may want to test cervical or penile discharge or urine using one of several available methods.
In most cases of chlamydia, the cure rate is 95%. However, because many women don’t know they have the disease until it has caused serious complications such as pelvic inflammatory disease, sexually active women under age 25 and others at higher risk should be tested for chlamydia once a year during their annual pelvic exam even if they dont have symptoms.
Pregnant women should also be tested as part of their routine lab work.
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What Can Be Done To Prevent The Spread Of Chlamydia
- Limit your number of sex partners
- Use a male or female condom
- If you think you are infected or have been exposed, avoid any sexual contact and visit a local sexually transmitted disease clinic, a hospital or your doctor. Either bring your sex partners with you when you are treated or notify them immediately so they can obtain examination and treatment.
How To Take Azithromycin
If you have been given azithromycin capsules you should take them at least 1 hour before food or 2 hours after eating. If you have tablets or liquid, you can take them with or without food.
Do not crumble or break tablets and capsules, swallow them whole with a glass of water or juice. Azithromycin liquid is available for people who find it difficult to swallow tablets.
Be sure to take the medicine exactly as directed by your doctor and always finish the course, even if you begin to feel better before completing the treatment.
Drinking moderate amounts of alcohol will not stop the treatment from working.
- feeling dizzy or tired
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What Other Problems Can Chlamydia Cause
In women, an untreated infection can spread to your uterus and fallopian tubes, causing pelvic inflammatory disease . PID can cause permanent damage to your reproductive system. This can lead to long-term pelvic pain, infertility, and ectopic pregnancy. Women who have had chlamydia infections more than once are at higher risk of serious reproductive health complications.
Men often don’t have health problems from chlamydia. Sometimes it can infect the epididymis . This can cause pain, fever, and, rarely, infertility.
Both men and women can develop reactive arthritis because of a chlamydia infection. Reactive arthritis is a type of arthritis that happens as a “reaction” to an infection in the body.
Babies born to infected mothers can get eye infections and pneumonia from chlamydia. It may also make it more likely for your baby to be born too early.
Untreated chlamydia may also increase your chances of getting or giving HIV/AIDS.
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Detection Of Genitourinary And Extragenital C Trachomatis And N Gonorrhoeae Infections In Cases Of Sexual Assault
Detailed information about evaluation and treatment of suspected victims of sexual assault can be obtained from the 2010 STD treatment guidelines . General recommendations pertaining only to C. trachomatis and N. gonorrhoeae testing are presented here. Examination of victims is required for two purposes: 1) to determine if an infection is present so that it can be successfully treated and 2) to acquire evidence for potential use in a legal investigation. Testing to satisfy the first purpose requires a method that is highly sensitive, whereas satisfying the second purpose requires a method that is highly specific. Although NAATs meet these criteria, acceptance of any test results is determined by local legal authorities. Local legal requirements and guidance also should be sought for maintaining and documenting a chain of custody for specimens and results that might be used in a legal investigation and for which test results are accepted as evidence.
Early Treatment Is The Key
When its diagnosed at an early stage, chlamydia can be treated quickly and effectively. But if the infection is left untreated, it can cause the following complications:
- In women it can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, which can lead to infertility
- It can cause reactive arthritis
- If youre pregnant and have chlamydia it can cause a miscarriage or premature birth. There is also a risk of passing the infection to the newborn baby during delivery, which can cause a severe infection
If youre concerned that you may be infected, it is important that you dont just wait around, but get tested right away. If you feel embarrassed or if STIs are something youd rather not discuss with your GP, you can get tested quickly and discreetly by ordering a chlamydia test kit from our website.
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