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Chlamydia Tests

How To Prepare

A chlamydia test is done on either a urine sample or fluid (direct sample) collected from the area of the body that is most likely to be infected. If your chlamydia test is being done on a:

  • Urine sample: Do not urinate for 2 hours before a urine sample is collected.
  • Direct sample (usually from the cervix): A woman should not douche or use vaginal creams or medicines for 24 hours before having a chlamydia test.

How It Is Done

Urine sample

If a urine sample is collected for nucleic acid amplification testing (such as PCR testing), do not urinate for 2 hours before the test. Do not wipe the genital area clean before urinating. Collect the first part of your urine stream, immediately as you begin urinating.

Direct sample

In a direct sample, a sample of body fluid is taken from the affected area. In adults, these areas may include the cervix, urethra, vagina, rectum, or eye.

  • For men. To collect a sample from the urethra or rectum, your doctor will insert a swab into the opening of your urethra or rectum. A sample from the urethra is more likely to detect chlamydia if a man has not urinated for at least 2 hours before the sample is taken.
  • For women. To collect a sample from the cervix, you will take off your clothes below the waist and drape a cloth around your waist. You will lie on your back on an exam table with your feet raised and supported by stirrups. This allows your doctor to examine your vagina and genital area. Your doctor will insert a lubricated speculum camera.gif into your vagina. The speculum gently spreads apart the vaginal walls so the inside of the vagina and the cervix can be looked at. Samples are collected from the cervix with a swab or small brush.
  • To collect a sample from your eye, your doctor will gently brush the insides of your lower and upper eyelids with a swab.

There is also a self-test for women to collect a sample from their vagina and bring it to the lab for testing.

In rare cases, a throat culture may be done.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: December 11, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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