Some people may ask the question "what is chlamydia". Chlamydia is an infection that is transmitted from one partner to the others via sexual or physical intercourse. This disease is not easily diagnosed because it lacks distinctive or characteristic sign and symptoms. In fact, a lot of people continue to suffer from the active infection without knowing about their infectious status. Chlamydia is very common in United States of America, but fortunately it can be easily treated if diagnosed. However, if it is left untreated, it can cause serious harm to the body. It is imperative to understand that it affects men and women equally.
What Is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is an infection that is caused by the invasion and proliferation of bacterial agent: chlamydia trachomatis. This bacteria attacks the genital tract of both males and females and leads to infectious state which is silent in most cases. The diagnostic test is performed on the sample extracted from male urethra or female cervix to identify the causing disease pathogen.
What Are the Symptoms of Chlamydia?
Symptoms in Males
Sensation of burning while passing urine
Discharge of secretion, sometimes pus or clear fluid from the penis
Pain in testis or the pelvic region
Symptoms in Females
Pain while passing urine
Pain in lower part of abdomen
Irregular vaginal secretions
Pain while having sexual intercourse
Apart from what have been mentioned above, there could be many other serious symptoms such as:
Vomiting, diarrhea and nausea
Discomfort and agitation
Feeling of cold
Pyrexia (varying degrees of fever)
Abnormal vaginal secretions that may contain blood or pus
Pain in pelvic region, abdome and lower back region
When to See a Doctor
If any of the above symptoms appears, it is highly recommended to consult a registered doctor. For example, if a person is having pain while passing urine, he should seek medical advice. Likewise, if your sexual partner is suffering from active chlamydia infection, it is advised to take the course of antibiotics even if you don't have any active symptoms of the infection.
What Are the Complications of Chlamydia?
Complications in Males
Epididymitis. It is an active inflammatory state of epididymis, which is the important tube that is situated in the scrotum and is adhered posteriorly to the testes. Some classic symptoms of epididymis involvement are pain sensation during urination and intercourse, pain while ejaculating, testicle clump, reddish, swollen, warm testicles, bulging lymph nodes, blood in penile discharge, etc.
Infertility. Researches have proved that epididymitis is a fairly common cause of male infertility that may lead to sterility.
Reiter’s syndrome. This syndrome is marked by a chronic arthritis as well as inflammation of eyes, genital parts and gastrointestinal system. In advanced settings, it may involve other organs such as heart, lungs and kidneys.
Urethritis. It is also referred to as the inflammation of urethra. Male urethra is a long tube that acts as a pathway for the urine from bladder to penis for final expulsion. Once this tube is obstructed, the patient may observe yellow pus-like discharge, which may lead to urethral strictures in untreated cases.
Complications in Females
Bartholinitis. There are the two glands present near the opening of vagina. The purpose of these glands is to provide the lubrication during the act of intercourse to minimize discomfort. This infection causes obstruction of this gland and lead to cyst formation or inflammation.
Cervicitis. An active infectious involvement of cervix is referred to as Cervicitis. Some classic symptoms that may suggest cervicitis are pus in the vaginal discharge, discomfort while urination and painful intercourse. Untreated Cervicitis can leads to formation of the cysts.
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). This disease occur when the inflammatory or infectious process involves genital tract, such as uterus, fallopian tube and ovaries. Infection in these areas can lead to a higher chance of ectopic pregnancy, infertility and painful menstruation. It means after fertilization the formed zygote does not implant in its real location but in fallopian tube or in cervix or even in abdomen.
Salpingitis. This refers to an active inflammatory state of oviduct that may lead to the obstruction of oviduct. It is imperative to understand that oviduct ailments can interfere with the process of fertilization and implantation, leading to ectopic pregnancies or infertility.
How Can Chlamydia Be Tested and Diagnosed?
This tests is performed for the sampling of vaginal or penile secretions in females and males respectively. The secretions are then used to analyze the type of infectious product in order to initiate the management.
Sample of urine is tested in the laboratory to ascertain the type of pathogen involved.
Who Should Be Tested for the Infection?
People Who Are Susceptible
Individuals who manifest promiscuous behavior and do not use safety measure like condoms are at high risk of exposure to this infection and must be screened for this infection at periodic intervals.
Pregnant ladies are ideally screened for sexually transmitted diseases to minimize the risk of exposure to the baby.
Women Under 25
This infection is fairly common in young individuals who are prone to change their partners more frequently and who are less likely to use protection like condoms and barriers.
How to Treat Chlamydia
Single dose antibiotic with high efficacy and safety profile in chlamydia infection.
Common brand names: Zithromax in UK, Italy, USA, Finland, Australia, South Africa, Portugal, Canada, Thailand and Belgium; APO-Azithromycin in Canada; Zmax or Sumamed in Croatia; Bactizith in Pakistan; Aziswift in India.
This antibiotic is usually effective in multi-dosing regimen.
Common brand names: atridox, doxylin, adoxa, doxyhexal, vibrox, doryx, oracea, vibra-tabs, periostat, monodox, microdox and vibramycin.
How to Prevent Chlamydia
Using physical barriers such as vaginal diaphragm or condoms during chance encounters is a highly effective strategy to prevent the risk of chlamydia and other sexually transmitted infections.
If a person is involved in promiscuous behavior, he/she should see a doctor for screening at regular intervals.
Females should limit douching because any change in vaginal pH can greatly increase the risk of transmission of infections.