Diagnosis of Chlamydia infection

  • Medical History
    The diagnosis of Chlamydia infection starts off with the medical professional enquiring about symptoms, signs and sexual history. Enquiries about any complications of Chlamydia infection should be made. The use of any other medication or the presence of any other conditions should also be made known to the investigating doctor.
  • Medical Examination
    The medical examination should start off with a brief physical examination. This should include vital signs and a brief systemic evaluation. The doctor should examine the patient’s genitals and feel for any swollen lymph nodes. It should be noted if any discharge, lesions or ulcers are present.
  • chlamydia-diag-swab

    Swabs of a discharge or scrapings of infected tissue can be used to test for Chlamydia infection

  • Specimen swabs
    Swabs of a discharge or scrapings of infected tissue can be used to test for Chlamydia infection. This can be done pain-free by the examining doctor. Home-kits are also available to obtain the specimen at home if the patient prefers this. It is important not to contaminate the specimen, to keep the swab cold and to get the sample to the investigating laboratory as quick as possible. Specimens collected by medical professionals are generally more accurate. In patients with abscesses or ulcers as a result of lymphogranuloma venereum, pus or infected tissue may also be sent to the laboratory to confirm the diagnosis.The diagnosis of Chlamydia infection is made either with direct cytological examination of cells, by cell culture or antigen detection. This test may also include anti-microbial sensitivity testing to determine if any resistance to antibiotics are present.
  • Urine
    The first voided morning urine is the best urine specimen to use when testing for Chlamydia infection. There are a few different ways in whichChlamydia is diagnosed using the urine sample. A common test is the Nucleic Acid Amplification test which determines the present of Chlamydia by testing for the presence of the bacteria’s genetic material. If the genetic material of Chlamydia is present it is a relatively accurate indication that Chlamydia is present
  • Blood Samples
    Taking a blood sample for the diagnosis of Chlamydia infection is not generally used because it is considered more accurate to use body fluid. A blood sample for Chlamydia antibodies may be taken to determine if a person has been exposed to Chlamydia previously. The presence of antibodies does not necessarilyindicate active disease. Women with positive antibodies for Chlamydia have a greater chance of having tubular damage. Bloods may also be done in newborn babies suspected of having been exposed to Chlamydia. A CRP may help indicate active infection. Antibody testing is sometimes combined with a CRP test to diagnose active Chlamydial infection.
  • Semen
    Semen can also be tested for the presence of Chlamydia infection. This test is generally done on men who wish to become semen donors. Semen is then tested to exclude Chlamydia infection.
  • Chlamydia Test Kit

    Chlamydia Test Kit

  • Screening for Chlamydia infection
    Chlamydia infection is often present without any symptoms. Individuals with no symptoms are more likely to spread the disease as they are unaware that they are infected. Chlamydia is also known to cause some important and adverse long term consequences. That is why it is advised that all women under 26 years who are possibly at risk of Chlamydia infection should be screened. This is a way to be able to detect and treat people who do not have any symptoms of the disease. Screening will thus prevent women from developing complications from Chlamydia infection like Pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. Screening young women for Chlamydia infection has shown to improve fertility, improve pregnancy outcomes and decrease the rate of Chlamydia transmission. Screening is either done using urine or a vaginal swab.