Chlamydia - What Happens
not cause long-term problems if it is treated before any complications develop.
Left untreated, chlamydia can lead to many complications, especially for women.
If a woman has chlamydia when she gives birth, her newborn can be
Having a chlamydia infection that was cured does not
protect you from a future infection. A new exposure to chlamydia will reinfect
you, even if you were treated and cured.
increases your risk of becoming infected with
human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) if you are exposed
to the virus.2
Untreated chlamydia can
cause a variety of complications.
Complications in women include:
Complications in pregnant women
Complications in newborns
Complications in men include:
Other complications of untreated chlamydia in all people include:
spread by touching the infected area and then touching the hand to the
- Inflammation of the mucous membrane of the rectum (proctitis),
if the chlamydia is from anal sex.
- Varied symptoms, such as joint
and eye inflammation, caused by bacterial infection (Reiter's syndrome).
- Lymphogranuloma venereum, or LGV. This is caused
by a type of chlamydia that is usually rare in the United States, but it is
becoming more common in men who have sex with men. It causes open sores in the
genital area, headache, fever, fatigue, and swelling of the
lymph nodes in the groin. It also causes proctitis in
people who get chlamydia through anal sex.