What is the most commonly reported STD in the united states?
It is Chlamydia. Most infected people are younger than 26 years of age and are not aware that they are infected since the disease often has no symptoms. Untreated victims can suffer from chronic pain and permanent infertility. The good news is that we have a quick diagnostic test and very effective treatments for patients newly infected with a chlamydia infection.
Chlamydia is a bacterial infection that usually infects the genitals of both men and women. However, it can also infect the throat, rectum, and eyes and thus can be transferred in multiple ways.
What are the signs of a Chlamydia infection?
Both men and women can often times remain symptom free when infected with Chlamydia. However, they can still transfer their infection to their sexual partner who may in turn experience symptoms. When symptoms do appear, they include the following:
Untreated Chlamydia infections in females can cause
- Recurrent or persistant lower abdominal pain
- Pain or bleeding with intercourse
- Burning with urination
- Unusual vaginal discharge or odor
Untreated Chlamydia infections in males can cause
- Burning sensation with urination
- Burning, itching and irritation around the tip of the penis
- White/cloudy or watery discharge from penis
Can a Chlamydia infection seriously harm me?
A Chlamydia Infection can spread to female organs in a disease called Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), which can cause recurrent or persistent pain and suffering. It can also cause infertility and pregnancy outside of the uterus. Additionally, PID can increase the chance of contracting HIV, if exposed. In men, untreated infection can cause inflammation of testicles which can decrease the chance of fertility. Chlamydia infection can attack joints, eyes and urinary tract all at the same time.
How can I get a Chlamydia infection?
Be aware that two-thirds of infected woman and half of infected men show no symptoms of infection at all. Because chlamydia can infect more than just the genitals, you can contract an infection by having any type of vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected partner – who may not even be aware they are infected. An infected mother can also transfer chlamydia to her baby during vaginal delivery.
How many days after infection do symptoms appear?
Symptoms can begin to show 1 to 3 weeks after infection.
How do doctors detect infection?
Very easily with a simple urine sample or with a swab from the mouth, vagina, or penis.
How is Chlamydia treated?
With a simple dose of antibiotics or, depending on the severity of the infection, with a longer course of treatment consisting up up to two weeks of medication.
Can I be re-infected after a course of treatment?
Yes. You can be reinfected by having sexual contact with your infected (but possibly symptom-free) sexual partner.
How can I avid recurrent infection?
By treating your infect partner at the same time that you are being treated.