Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted disease, caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis.
The disease is spread through having unprotected oral, vaginal or anal sex as well as by sharing sex toys.
It is the most commonly seen sexually transmitted disease in the UK, and most people who get chlamydia don't have symptoms (asymptomatic) or even know that they have it.
It is most commonly seen in men and women between the ages of 16- 25.
Around 10% of men and 20-30% of women who have a lab test that confirms the disease even go on to develop symptoms, and only about 30% of these women develop serious complications such as damage to the fallopian tubes (the tubes that connect the ovaries to the uterus) caused by pelvic inflammatory disease and may result in infertility.
If chlamydia is left untreated during pregnancy, it may result in premature childbirth.
The infection can be passed on to an unborn child and cause serious complications such as pneumonia or conjunctivitis (an inflammation of membranes in the eye that may lead to blindness).
Pregnant women are screened because it is so common to be without symptoms, and the consequences for the foetus/infant can be serious.
You can get a free chlamydia test at a sexual health clinic, your local GP surgery, or a genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinic.
The test kit will typically involve a swab, taken from the vagina or urethra. Doctors can also check for chlamydia by testing a urine sample.
If you or your partner thinks that you have any symptoms of chlamydia, then visit a doctor, or get a free, instant chlamydia test as soon as possible.
If it is detected and diagnosed early, you can treat the infection straight away, reducing the risk of any further complications.
Certain antibiotics can be used to treat Chlamydia with a very high success rate (over 90%) in most cases.
Doxycycline tablets (100mg twice daily for 7-days) is usually first line treatment, and a second line alternative is Azithromycin (1g as a starting dose, followed by 500mg daily for another 2-days).
It is important to always make sure you complete the full course of antibiotic treatment even if the symptoms disappear after a few doses.
Any person who is sexually active has a risk of contracting chlamydia, however it can be completely preventable by following the steps below:
If you have tested positive for chlamydia and need to buy medication, please complete our online consultation to determine which prescription treatment is right for you to purchase.
One of our doctors will then assess your condition and recommend which treatments are best suited for you.
Once you've selected your medication, a prescription will be sent to our pharmacy team to prepare and dispatched for free on a next day delivery.
Our friendly team is available to help Monday to Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm.
If you need urgent assistance, do not use this service. Call 111, or in an emergency call 999.