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Whittall Street Clinic is featured in Channel 4's new programme ‘The Sex Clinic’, starts 10pm Thursday 11th April.
New Rapid HIV Testing clinic at St Martin’s in the Bullring
Now open every Tuesday 11.00am - 3.15pm - no appointment needed.
The clinic is located upstairs in the St Martin’s Centre for Health & Healing next to the Church in the Bullring. Entrance to the clinic is via St Martin’s church shop.
Chlamydia (Chlamydia trachomatis) is the most common bacterial, sexually transmitted infection in the UK. It is easily treated and if found and treated early will not cause any long-term problems.
Untreated chlamydia on the other hand can cause serious long-term problems. In women these include:
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (see section on PID)
- Infertility - the inability to have a baby
- Ectopic pregnancy - pregnancy in the wrong part of the body
Untreated chlamydia infection in men can cause:
- Inflammation of the testicles - pain and swelling of the testicles
Less commonly, untreated chlamydia can cause sexually acquired reactive arthritis: painful joints (mostly knees and feet) associated with:
- In men, can be with conjunctivitis, and urethritis (Reiter’s syndrome)
- In women, can be associated with cervicitis
Because chlamydia often causes no symptoms, infected patients remain unaware of it. For this reason, and because it is currently so common, if you have ever had unprotected sex (sex without a condom) it is important to get tested for chlamydia.
How is it passed on?
Chlamydia can be passed on:
- Through unprotected (not using condoms) vaginal, oral or anal sex with someone who has chlamydia
- From mother to baby at birth
- Occasionally from fingers to eyes
- By sharing sex toys with someone who has chlamydia
Symptoms of chlamydia
Most often, women have no symptoms at all. Possible symptoms in women include:
- Increased vaginal discharge
- Pain when passing urine
- Pain during sex
- Pain in the lower stomach (abdomen)
- Bleeding between periods
Women who have noticed any of the above symptoms recently should attend GUM clinic to be tested for STI.
Men can also have chlamydia with no symptoms. However, they may show the following symptoms:
- A discharge (liquid) from the penis
- Pain or tingling when passing urine
Men or Women with chlamydia in their eyes:
- Chlamydia in the eyes can cause redness and irritation in the eyes
Chlamydia in the rectum remains mostly without symptoms.
How is chlamydia diagnosed?
In our clinics, we use the most advanced tests for diagnosis of chlamydia. We can test men’s urine, women’s self collected vaginal swabs, or specimens collected from swabs obtained by the doctors.
What is the treatment for chlamydia?
Azithromycin is the most commonly used antibiotic for treatment of chlamydia; one dose will treat the infection. There are several other antibiotics for treatment of chlamydia. You can obtain chlamydia treatment at our clinics for free.
Once chlamydia has been treated it will not re-occur unless you have unprotected sex with someone with untreated chlamydia infection. This is why it is important to treat your partner(s) for chlamydia as well. This will help you avoid being re-infected.
What are the complications of untreated chlamydia?
Untreated chlamydia can cause pelvic inflammatory disease [ link to the topic] in women and epididymo-orchitis [ link to the topic] in men. A small number of patients may develop reactive arthritis (inflammation and painful swelling of the joints, inflammation of the eyes, and genital organs). Untreated chlamydia can lead to premature delivery. Chlamydia can be transmitted from mothers to their babies causing eye infection. Chlamydia increases the risk of acquiring HIV infection if sexually exposed.
Protect yourself from chlamydia by using condoms every time you have vaginal, anal or oral sex.