Chlamydia - a silent STI with many consequences

April is STD Awareness Month and we believe it is time to focus on this important topic. According to the WHO (World Health Organization) around 1 million STIs are acquired every day worldwide.

Last week we talked about STIs, STDs and VDs and the differences between them.

Today, we are shedding a light on one of the most common STIs, Chlamydia, a sexually acquired infection that has become a public health concern. How do you know you have an infection with Chlamydia and what should you do next? Read further!

Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection with the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis. It represents a global public health concern as it is estimated to infect over 100 million people each year worldwide. It is frequent in sexually active young adults with the ages between 18 and 26 years old, with an equal distribution amongst women and men. Left untreated it can cause many complications and increase the risks of acquiring HIV.

Chlamydia can be transmitted through:

  • Direct contact between two individuals during sexual intercourse: vaginal, anal, oral

  • Direct contact with an infected cervical canal during birth

Risk factors

  • Young age: below 25 years old (as studies show that young age is correlated with a riskier sexual life)

  • Previous infection with Chlamydia or other STIs

  • Inconsistent condom use

  • New or multiple partners

  • A partner with an existent infection with Chlamydia

The infection with Chlamydia can be classified depending on the infected region: anogenital (anal and genital area), urogenital (urinary and genital area) and pharyngeal (pharynx) chlamydia

Urogenital infections

Symptoms in women

  • Up to 95% of infections do not show any symptoms

  • Vaginal discharge

  • Dysuria (pain during urination)

  • Frequent urination

  • Bleeding after sexual intercourse or between menstruations