Peer Health

Chlamydia

Chlamydia is the most prevalent STD in the U.S. It is most common among people in their late teens and early twenties and can coexist with gonorrhea and other STDs. It is estimated that one in five college students are infected with Chlamydia. The infection is most commonly transmitted through sexual intercourse. Babies can also be infected while passing through the birth canal of an infected mother. If Chlamydia is left untreated, women can develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID). There is also an increased danger of having an ectopic pregnancy if Chlamydia is left untreated.

People with Chlamydia do not necessarily know that they are infected. Sixty to eighty percent of women and ten percent of men who have Chlamydia exhibit no symptoms. In women, symptoms include: genital itching and burning, vaginal discharge, dull pelvic pain, bleeding between periods, and cervical inflammation. In men, symptoms include: mucus discharge from the penis (gradual onset five to twenty-one days after exposure) and painful urination. Again, these symptoms may be so mild that a man may not notice them. Treatment with an antibiotic is usually successful. Some people choose to be retested after the course of treatment has been completed. Testing for Chlamydia is performed at the Health Center free on request.