What Is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia (pronounced: kluh-MID-ee-uh) is a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
What Are STDs?
STDs (also called sexually transmitted infections or STIs) are infections that spread through sex (vaginal, oral, or anal). Some STDs can spread through close contact with the genitals or body fluids.
How Do People Get Chlamydia?
Chlamydia spreads through sex (vaginal, oral, or anal) with someone who has the infection.
What Are the Signs & Symptoms of Chlamydia?
Someone with chlamydia may have:
- discharge from the vagina, penis, or anus
- pain in the lower belly
- pain when peeing
Many people with chlamydia have no symptoms. They can spread the infection to others without knowing it.
What Causes Chlamydia?
A type of bacteria , Chlamydia trachomatis, causes chlamydia.
How Is Chlamydia Diagnosed?
To find out if someone has chlamydia, health care providers do tests on:
- fluid or discharge from the vagina, urethra, eye, or anus
- urine (pee)
How Is Chlamydia Treated?
Health care providers treat chlamydia with antibiotics . All sexual partners from the past 2 months need treatment too, even if they don't have signs of chlamydia.
You should not have sex again until:
- at least 7 days after you and your sexual partner(s) take the antibiotics
- you and your sexual partner(s) do not have signs of chlamydia
People can get chlamydia again if:
- their partners aren't treated with antibiotics
- they get treated but then have sex with someone else who has chlamydia
What Problems Can Happen?
If it's not treated, chlamydia can lead to:
- in girls: pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), which can damage the reproductive system, making it hard or impossible for a woman to get pregnant later on
- in guys: swelling in the testicles and tubes at the back of the testicles, possibly preventing a man from fathering kids later on
- joint problems
Can Chlamydia Be Prevented?
Anyone who is sexually active should get tested for STDs every year (or more often if recommended by their health care provider).Back to Articles
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