Chlamydia is a common infection caused by a type of bacteria which is easily treated. Sometimes there are symptoms, such as pain or irritation, and sometimes the infection is picked up as an incidental finding. Women can get Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) from chlamydia which can cause abdominal pain and fever. Men, if they get symptoms might just get urethral discharge and maybe some discomfort on passing urine. The main dangers of chlamydia relate to untreated infection and this usually causes problems for women, though men can pass the infection around without knowing. Young women 15-29 yrs are the most at risk group in Australia for chlamydia infection.
We always screen women who are having a procedure with us, and men if they attend for a sexual health consultation. Chlamydia testing forms part of a sexual health screen for infection.
Screening for chlamydia is easy and can be done on a self-taken swab or urine specimen. If we are performing a pelvic examination on a woman, a swab from the cervix can be taken.
Treatment is a single dose of antibiotics, though some contact tracing may be required. We can help with screening, diagnosis, treatment and counselling for chlamydia and other types of sexually transmitted infection.
Whenever someone tests positive for chlamydia we would always recommend they have a full sexual health screen for other infections too. Other STIs include gonorrhoea and blood borne viruses such as syphilis, HIV and Hepatitis B.
If you have Medicare cover we can bulk bill you for the tests. If you don't have Medicare cover, then the pathology company will send you a bill. Mostly these costs are reimbursable from your health insurer. If you have not been vaccinated against Hepatitis B or Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) we can do this for you.
Chlamydia transmission usually occurs through vaginal or anal penetration and can be prevented by condom usage. If you have tested positive for chlamydia and had treatment, we recommend you let any sexual partners you have had know from the previous six months. We can help you with this. You may want to come and get retested 3 months after getting treatment to ensure you have not been reinfected.