Also known as: chlamydia infection, sexually transmitted infection, STI, sexually transmitted disease, STD.

What is chlamydia?

Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted bacterial disease (STD) that is most commonly passed, through any form of sexual contact, from one person to another. Anyone having sexual contact can get the disease, without knowing it and those with many sexual partners are at greatest risk.

Mothers can also pass it to their babies during childbirth.

A Chlamydia infection may or may not cause symptoms and can be easily treated if detected. If undetected and untreated it may give rise, in females, to infection of their uterus, ovaries and tubes (pelvic inflammatory disease) with possible ongoing pain, and problems with becoming pregnant. In males it can affect male reproduction causing sterility.

What causes chlamydia?

A bacterium known as Chlamydia trachomatis is the cause of the disease.

What are the signs/ symptoms of chlamydia?

In females, when symptoms do occur, they can include an unusual discharge from the vagina, a painful burning feeling while urinating, pain during sex, and lower belly pain with fever, chills and vomiting.

Males may have a watery discharge from the penis, pain urinating and/or pain and swelling of the testicles.

What are chlamydia care options?

Chlamydia is treated with antibiotics. Abstinence from sex (for at least a week after completing medication), or the use of condoms during sex can help prevent the spread of the disease.

Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: February 01, 2021 03:41 PM

Adolescent Medicine

We offer programs dedicated to gender, substance abuse, behavioral issues, and pediatric gynecology.

Learn More