This post is a guide to the most common chlamydia symptoms one should be aware of.
What is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is a type of bacterial infection caused by the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis. Bacteria are the cause of Chlamydia. It is one of the most prevalent sexually-transmitted illnesses in the United States. This virus is easily transmitted since it frequently causes no symptoms. Around 75% of infections in women and 50% of infections in males show no symptoms. That implies you might inadvertently transmit Chlamydia to sexual partners. Chlamydia can create significant consequences if not treated.
What are sexually transmitted diseases?
Sexually transmitted diseases are the ones that are most commonly spread among the sexually active population. It is due to unsafe sex practices, such as engaging in unprotected intercourse and or maintaining multiple sexual partners. Sexual contact has transmitted more than 30 different germs, viruses, and parasites. Eight of these viruses have been associated with the highest rates of sexually transmitted illness. Syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and trichomoniasis are presently treatable. The other four are incurable viral infections. This includes hepatitis B, the herpes simplex virus (HSV or herpes), as well as HIV, and human papillomavirus (HPV).
Sexual encounter involving vaginal, anal, and oral sex is the most common way STIs spread. Some STIs can be passed down from mother to kid during pregnancy, delivery, and nursing.
An STI can still occur in the lack of illness signs. STIs are commonly associated with vaginal secretions, urethral release or burning in men, genital ulcers, and stomach discomfort.
Multiple organisms may cause sexually transmitted infections (or diseases); some examples include
- Bacteria( such as chlamydia)
- Viruses ( such as HIV, HPV)
- Fungi(such as Candida Albicans)
- Parasites (such as Trichomonas Vaginalis)
These diseases, unfortunately, are difficult to diagnose as they present symptoms very late; that is, by the time there are identifiable symptoms, the disease would have progressed into complications.
What are the causes of sexually-transmitted-diseases (STDs)?
Bacteria, viruses, and parasites can all cause STDs.
How does chlamydia spread?
Chlamydia can be contracted through intercourse, anal sex, or oral sex. Because Chlamydia seldom causes symptoms, many individuals who have it are unaware of it and inadvertently infect others. These are some Chlamydia causes. Regular screenings can assist in decreasing the spread of Chlamydia.
Can you get chlamydia infection only by unprotected sex?
No, multiple risk factors cause chlamydia infection (or any sexually transmitted infection for that matter)
The major factors that may promote contracting chlamydia besides unprotected vaginal intercourse are as follows:
1. Unprotected oral sex or anal sex
2. Contact of body fluids such as vaginal discharge of semen to the face, specifically to the eyes or nose (May cause eye infection as the infection spreads via infected body fluids)
3. Tear in the condom (very common in the case of expired condoms, use of oil-based lubricants, improper fitting condoms)
What are the most common early chlamydia-symptoms?
The most common early chlamydia-symptoms are as follows:
1. Urinating pain:
The earliest chlamydia symptom is pain while urinating in both sexes. It may also present as a burning sensation while urinating.
It is important to pay attention to your body and its signs to identify such infections.
2. Pain in the groin, Rectal pain, penis pain, or pain in the vagina:
These are some of the earliest and common symptoms.
Rectal pain may be caused due to chlamydia infection in the rectum via anal sex.
In young women, abnormal vaginal discharge is observed.
This usually yellow discharge is associated with discomfort, and a strong odor is one of the strongest symptoms.
Men may also present with a discharge that is yellow with a strong odor. This does not subside easily, and it is purulent or pus-like in its consistency.
4. Unusual sore:
The presence of an unusual sore or ulcer in and around the groin in both sexes is very important in identifying chlamydia-symptoms.
It may be presented as a sore that bleeds very easily, causing pain as chlamydia infects skin and mucosa via the body fluids. It contains pus-like chlamydia discharge and causes severe discomfort.
5. Lower abdominal pain or pelvic pain
Pain in the abdomen that is not relieved despite regular bowel movements is common chlamydia-symptoms. Now, it is also one of the most common chlamydia-symptoms in both sexes.
6. Pain During intercourse:
Pain during intercourse is the most easily identifiable and obvious symptom of all symptoms. It can be in both sexes. It presents as discomfort and, when ignored, may end up being a very painful condition.
These symptoms are some of the most common and earliest signs your body gives you. Please be mindful of them and identify them early; reach out to your health care provider for a smooth process to get chlamydia treated and the recovery process.
Besides these common symptoms, you may also present with symptoms such as:
Unexplained fever that does not subside for over three weeks is one of the lesser common symptoms.
It is also one of the causes of pyrexia of unknown origin, fever due to unknown causes.
Severe fatigue or tiredness is another less common and less obvious chlamydia symptom. It occurs because your body struggles to fight the bacteria trying to invade the entire reproductive tract.
3. Unexplained eye infections:
When there is contact with semen or vaginal fluids of people who have chlamydia due to oral sex, the bacteria infects the eye leading to discharge and pain.
4. Develop pneumonia-like symptoms
When bodily fluids such as semen and vaginal discharge are swallowed or aspirated by the nose, they may end up infecting the lungs leading to pneumonia-like symptoms.
5. Testicular pain:
One or both testicles may present with severe pain upon genital contact with an infected vagina.
Chlamydia trachomatis infects a long coiled tube in the testes, called the epididymis, causing fever, swelling, and severe pain.
What is the treatment for chlamydia infection?
Chlamydia is a treatable infection. Chlamydia-trachomatis is a bacteria that can be treated by using antibiotics. Chlamydia treatments may go as:
1. Physical examination
Your doctor or health care provider will first examine you physically to check for sores or ulcers in your groin, mouth, and rectal areas depending on which area you present with pain.
If symptoms are present, a healthcare expert may perform a physical exam. This allows them to look for any discharge, lesions, or odd patches that might indicate an infection.
The most efficient diagnostic test for chlamydia is a vaginal swab in women and a male urine test. If the infection is suspected to be in the anus or throat, these locations may also be swabbed.
It may take several days for the results to become available. The doctor’s office should contact you to discuss the results. A follow-up consultation will be scheduled if the test is positive, and treatment options will be discussed.
2. Laboratory tests:
The test’s purpose
The goal of chlamydia testing is to detect if a person has a chlamydia infection.
Because most persons infected with chlamydia do not exhibit symptoms, clinicians rely on screening tests to discover the majority of infections. Screening tests try to identify health issues before symptoms appear. While doctors may screen for chlamydia on their own, STD screening sometimes includes testing for other STDs at the same time.
When a chlamydia symptom is present, diagnostic testing is utilized to confirm or rule out chlamydia as the origin of the symptoms. Because chlamydia can induce symptoms similar to gonorrhoea, another prevalent STD, individuals with chlamydia-symptoms are frequently tested for gonorrhoea.
Your doctor, post the physical examination, will order some lab tests for you. These may include swabs, urine sample examination, blood work, and cultures.
The primary approach for identifying chlamydia infection is NAAT. This test identifies Chlamydia trachomatis genetic material (DNA or RNA). It is possible to conduct it using a urine sample or a swab of fluid collected from a suspected infection such as the urethra, vagina, rectum, or eye.
Traditionally, NAAT takes a day or more to get findings, although NAAT-based fast chlamydia tests have been developed. Rapid chlamydia testing may frequently produce results in 30 to 90 minutes. Urine samples or swabs of fluid obtained from the vagina or cervix are frequently used in rapid chlamydia testing.
3. Antibiotic treatment:
Upon the results of the lab tests, if they diagnose chlamydia infection, your doctor will prescribe a strong dose of antibiotics such as azithromycin or Doxycycline. You may be given a single dosage, or you may be required to take the drug daily or many times each day for five to ten days.
The infection will clear up in one to two weeks in most situations. It would help if you refrained from intercourse during that period. Even if they show no indications or symptoms, your sexual partner or partners require therapy. Otherwise, the virus can be spread from sexual partner to sexual partner.
If it is a more severe infection, intravenous antibiotics may be prescribed.
It’s important to discuss with your doctor if you have any allergies to specific medications.
4. Sexual partner:
One of the key points in treating a sexually transmitted disease such as chlamydia is treating the infected partner to avoid the chance of repeat infection or re-infection of the disease.
If it is a case of multiple sex partners, the various partners are requested to undergo a chlamydia test and treatment for disease control.
Your doctor may further provide medical advice on the management and prevention of such diseases.
What happens when chlamydia infection is left untreated?
If a chlamydia infection is left untreated, it will lead to serious complications.
What are the pregnancy complications with Chlamydia?
The untreated chlamydial infection has been associated with childbirth complications such as preterm labor, early membrane rupture, and low birth weight. The newborn may get contaminated as the infant goes through the birth canal. Babies who are exposed can get eye and lung infections.
1. Pelvic inflammatory disease PID:
It’s is one of the more serious health problems caused by chlamydia trachomatis infection. PID is a disease of the female reproductive system. It’s what’s called an ascending infection, which means the infection travels from the vagina to the uterus and the fallopian tubes.
The longer there is an untreated infection, the higher up the reproductive tract the condition will go. This will lead to inflamed fallopian tubes, which means the fertilization of the ovum does not occur easily.
Even if it does, sometimes the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus, leading to an ectopic pregnancy. Chlamydia infection puts women at a higher risk of infertility and ectopic pregnancies.
If birth control fails and the woman conceives without an ectopic pregnancy, it poses more difficulty in treating the infection. High doses of antibiotics pose a risk to both mother and baby and invite other disorders as pregnant women are already immunocompromised.
2. Reactive arthritis:
One of the more severe complications of chlamydia infection is reactive arthritis.
It is an inflammatory condition of the joints, such as the knee joints, which poses difficulty to perform basic tasks such as walking, sitting up, and standing often.
Both sexes with long-term untreated chlamydia infection are at a higher risk of this disease.
3. Infection with other STI’s:
Contracting chlamydia also increases the risk of infection of other sexually-transmitted-diseases and opportunistic infections such as HIV, vaginal candidiasis, HPV (especially when there are multiple sex partners)
It is because chlamydia infection alters the optimal pH, mucous consistency, and other factors that provide natural immunity to the body.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I prevent chlamydia infections?
Although the symptoms and complications may sound daunting, in reality, preventing chlamydia infection is very simple. You can avoid chlamydia infections by:
1. Avoiding multiple sex partners. Avoid sexual contact with unknown individuals and maintain your sexual health.
2. Avoiding unprotected intercourse(unprotected vaginal, anal, and oral sex to be avoided); preferably use latex condoms.
If you or your partner are allergic to latex, polyurethane condoms can be used. Even for oral sex, a latex/polyurethane condom can be cut up and used to avoid contact with the genitals.
3. Once chlamydia diagnosed, the patient must ensure treatment of sex partner as well. This is essential to limit the chances of relapse of the disease via infection.
4. Medical education for all sexually active adults regarding safe sex practices and identification of early symptoms of chlamydia infection(and other STI’s)
5. Ensure that once you identify symptoms of chlamydia or you’re diagnosed with it, you do not pass chlamydia infection to others.
These were the most common symptoms that one may be present with.
Symptoms of chlamydia may be late in onset and sometimes may not present as easily, but always keep an eye out for any discomfort or abnormality you may observe. It ensures early detection and treatment without complications.
Please get in touch with your health care advisor or doctor immediately if you present with any of these symptoms.
Ensure you share this knowledge about these symptoms with other sexually active adults to ensure disease control and prevention of transmission.
CDC fact sheet states that chlamydia infection is one of the most common and preventable infections of the reproductive age group.
What are some Chlamydia symptoms male?
At least half of all males infected with Chlamydia have no symptoms. If chlamydia in men does develop, the most common symptoms would be:
- Urinary discomfort.
- Burning or itching in the urethra white, hazy, or watery discharge from the tip of the penis (the tube that carries urine out of the body)
- If Chlamydia is not treated, it will enlarge the epididymis and testicles (the tubes that deliver sperm from the testicles). This might have an impact on your fertility.
What are some Chlamydia symptoms women?
At least 70% of women infected with chlamydia have no symptoms. If they do develop symptoms, the following are the most common:
- Odd vaginal discharge discomfort in the belly or pelvic pain during sex, bleeding after sex, bleeding between periods.
- If chlamydia is not treated, it can travel to the womb and cause pelvic inflammatory disease, a dangerous illness (PID).
- This is a primary cause of ectopic pregnancy and female infertility.
Is Chlamydia curable?
Yes, chlamydia may be cured with the appropriate medication. It would help if you took all of the medication prescribed by your healthcare provider to treat your illness. Do not share chlamydia medication with anybody.
Remember, unsafe orgasms lead to complicated organisms. Kindly practice safer sex. And be fully aware of any such symptoms. I hope this article on the most common chlamydia-symptoms has been of help to you and has provided you with all the details you need to know on the symptoms and how to prevent them.
Does chlamydia test detect LGV?
Lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV) infection can be detected by chlamydia urine or swab testing. Hence a negative chlamydia test typically signifies no LGV infection. A specialized test should be conducted on the same sample if a person tests positive for chlamydia and has either LGV-like symptoms or has had sexual contact with someone who has LGV.