Facts About Chlamydia

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Chlamydia infection is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by Chlamydia trachomatis, a bacterium that infects humans.  Chlamydia, one of the leading bacterial STIs worldwide, can cause genital and eye diseases in humans.

Fact 1. An estimated 2.3 million Americans are infected with Chlamydia taking into consideration only about 38 percent of sexually active women are tested for Chlamydia.

Fact 2.   The recurrence of Chlamydia is prevalent amongst women aged 14-19.

Fact 3.   British women under the age of 25 and who are sexually active have a 10 percent chance of being infected with Chlamydia while for men the peak age range is 20 to 30 years of age.

Fact 4.  Based on World Health Organization (WHO) reports, 15 percent of worldwide blindness was caused by Chlamydia conjunctivitis (trachoma) in 1995, which dropped to 3.6% in 2002.

Fact 5. Chlamydia is transferred through sex (anal, vaginal, oral) with an infected person.

Fact 6. Chlamydia can be transferred from an infected woman to her baby during childbirth.

Fact 7. Chlamydia has the reputation of a ‘œsilent’ infection due to a lack of symptoms.

Fact 8.  A woman’s reproductive organs can be damaged by Chlamydia when infection spreads upwards to the uterus and fallopian tubes, causing pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).  This can lead to long-term PID, the inability to become pregnant, pregnancy outside of the uterus, and pre-term delivery. Newborn infants can develop eye infections or pneumonia.

Fact 9. The origin of the Greek word chlamys  refers to ‘œcloak draped’ around the shoulder. The word refers to inclusions caused by bacterium draped around the nucleus of infected cells. Chlamydia trachomatis is a bacterium that cannot grow outside a living cell.

Fact 10. The global estimation of high-risk Chlamydia infections stands at around 500 million people. There are over 140 million infected people with 6 million people blind in Africa, Middle East, Asia and Latin America. The disease is prevalent in rural areas  defined by poor sanitation and limited access to water. More women are afflicted with Chlamydia with the most prominent outcome being visual loss.

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