Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
Chlamydia in Females
Chlamydia is one of the most common sexually transmitted
diseases in the U.S. Caused by bacteria called Chlamydia
trachomatis, it most often starts as an infection of the
You must see a doctor to check if you have chlamydia for
What are the symptoms?
Seventy percent of women with chlamydia have no symptoms.
When there are symptoms, they include:
- abnormal vaginal discharge
- burning pain when going to the bathroom
- dull pelvic pain
- spotting or bleeding between menstrual periods
- menstrual bleeding that is heavier than usual
- more painful periods
- more frequent urination.
How long will chlamydia last?
The outcome of a chlamydial infection depends on:
- The length of time you have been infected.
- Whether the infection has spread through your uterus and
- The number of previous chlamydial infections you have
With proper treatment the infection usually clears in
If not treated, chlamydia can spread through the uterus to
the fallopian tubes, causing pelvic inflammatory disease
(PID). PID is an infection of the entire female
reproductive system. It can cause serious damage, such as
infertility. PID also increases the risk of tubal pregnancy
(a pregnancy outside the uterus).
Chlamydia can be transmitted from the mother to her baby
during birth. It can cause eye infections and lung
infections in the newborn baby.
What is the treatment?
You will need to take the antibiotic prescribed by your
Tell everyone with whom you have been sexually active in
the last 3 months about your infection. They must also
be treated even if they have no symptoms. Do not have
sex until both you and your partner have finished all
Because chlamydia is sexually transmitted, there are
ways that you can help prevent this infection. Not
having sex (abstinence) is the best method of
prevention. Use of condoms is the next best method. In
addition, you are less likely to get a sexually
transmitted disease if you have just one sexual partner.
It is possible to be infected with chlamydia or
gonorrhea and yet not have any symptoms. If you
continue to be sexually active, you should get a test
for chlamydia and gonorrhea at your yearly pelvic
examination, along with a Pap smear.
Call Your Doctor Immediately If:
- You develop severe abdominal pain.
- You vomit and cannot hold the medication down.
- You develop a fever over 100ƒF (37.8ƒC).
- You feel you are getting sicker.
Call Your Doctor During Office Hours If:
- You have other questions or concerns.