Chlamydia is the No. 1 sexually transmitted disease in the US. Chlamydia is known as the “silent epidemic” because most of the women and many men with the disease have no symptoms.

Symptoms

Possible symptoms include discharge from the penis or vagina and some burning sensations during urination. Additional symptoms for women include lower abdominal pain or pain during intercourse and bleeding between menstrual periods. Men may experience burning and itching around the opening of the penis and pain or swelling in the testicles. The males are more likely to have symptoms, than women. Men may also have a discharge from the penis.

Some men think they have gonorrhea, but it is not. The incubation period for chlamydia is longer and the discharge is lighter in color. Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), which can be caused by chlamydia, is a cause of infertility when left untreated.

Treatment

There is treatment for chlamydia with antibiotics. A single dose of azithromycin or a week long treatment with doxycycline taken twice daily are the most common treatments.

Transmission

The most common form of transmission is through sexual intercourse and oral sex.

Testing

There are two methods to test for chlamydia. One involves taking a cotton swab sample from the infected area and the other is with a urine test. The urine test is most common.