Understanding Chlamydia -- Symptoms

Medically Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson, MD on May 02, 2023
1 min read

Often chlamydia will present no symptoms. When symptoms are present, common ones include:

In men:

  • A clear or whitish yellow discharge from the tip of the penis
  • A frequent urge to urinate or a burning sensation while urinating
  • Redness at the tip of the penis
  • Painful or tender testicles

In women:

  • Mild discomfort that you may mistake for menstrual cramps
  • Vaginal discharge that may have a bad smell
  • Bleeding between periods
  • Painful periods
  • Pain when having sex
  • Itching or burning in or around the vagina
  • Pain when urinating


You are a woman and you experience high fever and other flu-like symptoms, such as chills, backache, weight loss, and diarrhea, along with severe pelvic pain, bleeding after intercourse, severe nausea, or recurring back pain; you may have developed pelvic inflammatory disease, a serious complication of chlamydia that can result in sterility.

You develop any of the symptoms listed above; chlamydia requires urgent medical treatment to avoid serious complications that can lead to sterility, especially in women.

Rarely, genital chlamydial infection can cause arthritis accompanied by skin lesions and inflammation of the eye and urethra, a condition known as Reiter's syndrome.