Chlamydia

Page last reviewed 21.9.2020

Chlamydia is the most common STI in Finland. In 2019, 16 000 new chlamydia infections were diagnosed. Chlamydia bacteria can spread through unprotected vaginal or anal intercourse or oral sex. Infection in the eye is also possible.

What are the symptoms of chlamydia?

  • The symptoms of chlamydia typically appear within 10 to 14 days from the infection. Often chlamydia shows no symptoms, or the symptoms are very mild.
  • Symptoms can include unusual discharge from the vagina, burning when urinating, feeling the need to urinate more often than usual, grey discharge from the urethra, lower stomach or lower back pain and testicle pain. In the eye, the infection can cause inflammation in the conjunctiva tissue.
  • Untreated chlamydia may cause arthritis and sometimes infertility. For women, it may also cause infections in the sex organs. If a person gets chlamydia in their eye, it may cause an eye infection.

When and how should I get tested?

  • A chlamydia test should be taken 1 to 2 weeks after unprotected sex. The test can be taken as a urine sample. If the infection is in the anus or in the throat it can’t be detected from urine and the sample must be taken from the infected area.

How can I protect myself and how is it treated?

  • The treatment for chlamydia is antibiotics. After taking all the prescribed antibiotics, a new test sample is taken to check that the infection has been removed.
  • To protect yourself against chlamydia, use a condom and oral sex protection. If you have anal sex, use a condom and lubricant.