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Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the bacterium, Chlamydia Trachomatis, which can damage a woman's reproductive organs. Even though symptoms of Chlamydia are usually mild or absent, serious complications that cause irreversible damage, including infertility, can occur "silently" before a woman ever recognizes a problem. Chlamydia also can cause discharge from the penis of an infected man.

Most people who have Chlamydia don’t know it since the disease often has no symptoms.

  • Chlamydia is the most commonly reported STI in the United States.
  • Sexually active females 25 years old and younger need testing every year.
  • Easy to cure, Chlamydia can impact a woman’s ability to have children, if left untreated.

For more information on Chlamydia, visit: Chlamydia - CDC Fact Sheet

CDC Recommends Chlamydia Screening of All Sexually Active Women 25 and Under
Chlamydia and Gonorrhea are important preventable causes of infertility. Untreated, about 10-15% of women with Chlamydia will develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID).

Chlamydia can also cause fallopian tube infection without any symptoms. PID, a “silent” infection in the upper genital tract, may cause permanent damage to the fallopian tubes, uterus, and surrounding tissues, which can lead to infertility.

  • An estimated 2.8 million cases of Chlamydia and 718,000 cases of Gonorrhea occur annually in the United States.
  • Most women infected with Chlamydia or Gonorrhea have no symptoms.

CDC recommends annual Chlamydia screening for all sexually active females 25 and under and for women older than 25 with risk factors such as a new sex partner or multiple partners.

When a Woman is Pregnant STIs Can be More Serious for Her and Her Baby

  • A pregnant woman with an STI can infect her baby before, during, or after the baby’s birth.
  • She may also have early labor or early rupture of the membranes surrounding the baby in the uterus.
  • Pregnant women should ask their doctors about getting tested for STIs, since some doctors do not routinely perform these tests.

For more information, visit:  STDs & Pregnancy - CDC Fact Sheet

Disease Intervention Specialists (DIS) (to come)

If you have any other questions on HIV/AIDS or any sexually transmitted disease, please call the Virginia HIV, STD, and Viral Hepatitis Hotline: (800) 533 - 4148.

Last Updated: 10-03-2013

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