Cross Street Medical Clinic offers all relevant STD/STI screening tests and treatments. Speak to our doctors today about what you may need. Female doctors are available by appointment. We ensure patient privacy and confidentiality for all discussions, tests and treatments.
What is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia infection (or chlamydia) is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis.
Chlamydia is one of the most common STIs worldwide. In 2016, over 2.5 million new cases were reported in the USA.
In Singapore, chlamydia infections are most common among those between the ages of 20 and 40 with males accounting for approximately 60% of cases (DSC, 2016).
How do we contract Chlamydia?
Chlamydia can be spread during vaginal, anal or oral sex.
If you have had chlamydia and were treated, you can still get infected again through unprotected sex with someone with chlamydia.
How can we tell we that may have Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is often called a “silent” infection, because 70–80% of cases have no symptoms and the infection can linger in the body for months or years before being discovered.
For 10-20% of cases, symptoms develop a few weeks after sex.
Common symptoms of chlamydia:
- In women: vaginal discharge or burning sensation when urinating
- In men: mucoid or watery discharge from the penis, burning sensation when urinating, tingling or vague discomfort in urethra and testicular pain and swelling
- Men and women can also get infection in the rectum. People may experience rectal pain, discharge or bleeding
- Men and women can also get infection in the eyes (conjunctivitis)
Testing for Chlamydia
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT/NAT) are the most sensitive tests and suitable for self-collected vaginal swabs or urine-based screening. Tests may be done on:
- A urine sample or a swab of the cervix, vagina, or urethra
- Rectal swabs are required to diagnose infections in the rectum
- Mouth swabs are required to diagnose infections in the mouth
Cross Street Medical offers all relevant chlamydia screening tests. Speak to our doctors today about what you may need. Female doctors are available by appointment. We ensure patient privacy and confidentiality for all discussions, tests and treatments.
What does Chlamydia do to our bodies?
Usually, chlamydia causes symptoms at the site of infection.
Untreated chlamydia may also increase a person’s risk of HIV infection.
In 10-15% of women with untreated chlamydia, infection can spread to the uterus and fallopian tubes, causing pelvic inflammatory disease, chronic pelvic pain, infertility and potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy. Some patients may also develop perihepatitis.
Chlamydia can be passed from an infected mother to her baby during childbirth. There is a significant risk of the baby developing conjunctivitis and pneumonia. Pre-natal screening is recommended.
Chlamydia may also cause reactive arthritis with or without urethritis and conjunctivitis (Reiter’s Syndrome).
A different strain of chlamydia trachomatis may cause lymphogranuloma venereum, an infection of the lymph nodes and lymphatics.
What is the treatment for Chlamydia?
Chlamydia can be cured by antibiotics.
There is a small risk of antibiotic resistance, so you may require more than one course of antibiotics to cure the infection.
For positive cases, gonorrhoea, syphilis, and HIV should be tested.
Furthermore, all sexual partners (within 60 days of the onset of symptoms) should be screened for chlamydia and treated.
Following treatment, patients should be tested again after three months, to confirm successful treatment of chlamydia infection.
Cross Street Medical offers chlamydia treatment. Speak to our doctors today about what you may need. Female doctors are available by appointment. We ensure patient privacy and confidentiality for all discussions, tests and treatments.
How do we prevent infection and re-infection?
- Avoiding high risk sex , including commercial sex workers, casual sex and multiple sex partners
- Using condoms, including during oral sex
- Being in a long-term monogamous relationship with a partner who has tested negative for chlamydia and other STDs/STIs
- If you are a sexually active man who is gay, bisexual, or who has sex with men, you should be tested for chlamydia and other STD/STI every year. If you are a sexually active woman with risk factors such as new or multiple sex partners, or a sex partner who has a sexually transmitted infection, you should be tested for chlamydia and other STD/STI every year