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Understanding Chlamydia -- Diagnosis and Treatment

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 don’t have symptoms. 

Understanding Chlamydia

Pregnant women should also be tested as part of their routine lab work.

What Are the Treatments for Chlamydia?

If you are diagnosed with chlamydia, your doctor will prescribe oral antibiotics. A single dose of azithromycin or taking doxycycline twice daily for 7 to 14 days are the most common treatments and are the same for those with or without HIV.

With treatment, the infection should clear up in about a week. Do not have sex for at least 7 days until you have taken all of your medication, and do not stop taking the antibiotics even if you feel better.

Your doctor will also recommend that your partner(s) be treated as well to prevent reinfection and further spread of the disease.

Women with serious infections, such as pelvic inflammatory disease, may require a longer course of antibiotics or hospitalization for intravenous antibiotics. Some severe pelvic infections may require surgery in addition to antibiotic therapy.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by David T. Derrer, MD on March 29, 2014
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