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What is Chlamydia?
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Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by infection with Chlamydia trachomatis. It can cause cervicitis in women and urethritis and proctitis in both men and women. Chlamydial infections in women can lead to serious consequences, including pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), tubal factor infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain. Lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV), another type of STD caused by different serovars of the same bacterium, occurs commonly in the developing world and has more recently emerged as a cause of outbreaks of proctitis among men who have sex with men (MSM) worldwide. (1,2)
Chlamydia within the State of Georgia
In 2017, 65,104 chlamydial infections were reported to the Georgia Department of Public Health which was an increase of 2,328 cases from 2016. Chlamydia is the most commonly reported notifiable disease in Georgia. When compared to other states in 2017, Georgia ranked 6th in the nation based on infection rate.
Additional Information and Facts
Testing and Treatment
Chlamydia can be easily cured with antibiotics. HIV-positive persons with chlamydia should receive the same treatment as those who are HIV-negative.
Persons with chlamydia should abstain from sexual activity for 7 days after single-dose antibiotics or until completion of a 7-day course of antibiotics to prevent spreading the infection to partners. It is important to take all of the medication prescribed to cure chlamydia. Medication for chlamydia should not be shared with anyone. Although medication will cure the infection, it will not repair any permanent damage done by the disease. If a person’s symptoms continue for more than a few days after receiving treatment, he or she should return to a health care provider to be reevaluated.
Repeat infection with chlamydia is common.5 Women whose sex partners have not been appropriately treated are at high risk for re-infection. Having multiple chlamydial infections increases a woman’s risk of serious reproductive health complications, including pelvic inflammatory disease and ectopic pregnancy. (6,7) Women and men with chlamydia should be retested about three months after treatment of an initial infection, regardless of whether they believe that their sex partners were successfully treated. (4)
Infants infected with chlamydia may develop ophthalmia neonatorum (conjunctivitis) and/or pneumonia. (3) Chlamydial infection in infants can be treated with antibiotics.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2016, December 9). CDC – Chlamydia Treatment. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/std/chlamydia/treatment.htm.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, January 19). Detailed STD Facts - Chlamydia. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/std/chlamydia/stdfact-chlamydia-detailed.htm.