Screening for Chlamydia
The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are usually administered to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases or conditions.
Screening for chlamydia is done only for sexually transmitted forms and is especially important for pregnant women to prevent neonatal infections.
Anyone is able to contract chlamydia after unprotected sexual contact with someone who is infected. All pregnant women and anyone with any ]]>sexually transmitted disease]]> should be suspected of having a chlamydial infection. All those who are not treated routinely should be screened.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Preventive Services Task Force have issued recommendations for chlamydia screening. The CDC recommends yearly testing for:
- Sexually active women age 25 or younger
- Older women with risk factors for chlamydial infections (eg, those who have a new sex partner or multiple sex partners)
- All pregnant women
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening of sexually active women 24 years of age and younger and pregnant women over 24 who are at high risk. The Task Force concluded that there was not enough evidence to support screening for men, and made no recommendation for or against screening low risk pregnant women.
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. Psittacosis. Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety website. Available at: http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/diseases/psittacosis.html . Accessed September 18, 2008.
Canadian Paediatric Society website. Available at: http://www.cps.ca/ . Updated March 2008. Accessed September 18, 2008.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Male Chlamydia screening consultation. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/std/chlamydia/ChlamydiaScreening-males.pdf. Published March 2006. Accessed July 27, 2010.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sexually transmitted diseases: chlamydia. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/std/chlamydia/default.htm . Accessed September 18, 2008.
Fauci A, Braunwald E, Isselbacher K, et al, eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine . 14th ed. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 1998.
International Trachoma Initiative website. Available at: http://www.trachoma.org/ . Accessed September 18, 2008.
The Merck Manual .17th ed. West Point, PA: Merck and Co; 1999.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Chlamydia. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases website. Available at: http://www3.niaid.nih.gov/topics/chlamydia/ . Accessed September 18, 2008.
National Women's Health Organization. Chlamydia. National Women's Health Organization website. Available at: http://www.4women.gov/faq/stdchlam.htm . Updated May 2005. Accessed September 18, 2008.
US Preventive Services Task Force. Screening for chalmydial infection. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2007:147;128-134.
Last reviewed September 2010 by ]]>Lawrence Frisch, MD, MPH]]>
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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