Diagnosis of Chlamydia

By  , Expert Content
Jan 31, 2012

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Chlamydia infection is a sexually transmitted disease. If you have symptoms suggestive of any type of genital infection, consult your doctor to diagnose the cause of your symptoms; do not avoid consulting a doctor and getting tested.

Medical history and physical examination: Your doctor will take a detailed medical history and ask you questions pertaining to the time when the symptoms started, your sexual history, associated medical conditions that you may have and   your medications (prescription and non-prescription). You will be examined for signs and symptoms of genital lesions. The doctor may recommend tests to confirm the diagnosis as only a test can confirm the existence of Chlamydia infection.

Tests for Chlamydia:
Several tests are available for the diagnosis of Chlamydia. Accuracy of various tests is different and kits available in shops for Chlamydia may be less reliable. The tests mentioned below have an accuracy of over 90% in picking up the infection. There are different ways to test for Chlamydia in men and women. They are:


  • Cervical swab: Your doctor may take a swab from the cervix (neck of the womb) to test for Chlamydia. You can take a swab sample from the lower vagina, put the sample into a container and send it to a laboratory for testing. Routine cervical screening tests are not helpful to detect Chlamydia.
  • Urine sample: In recent years, urine tests have been developed to test for Chlamydia infection. You will be advised to take the sample home and send it to lab for testing.


  • Urethral swab: Your doctor may take a sample of cells to test for Chlamydia by putting a swab into the opening of the urethra at the tip of the penis. The test may be painful and uncomfortable.
  • Urine test: Currently, urine test is also used to diagnose Chlamydia. This test is less reliable than swab test, but is much easier and less uncomfortable.

Testing for non-genital Chlamydia

If you have had anal or oral sex, sample of cells for testing may be taken from your rectum or throat (swab from throat or rectum). For people with symptoms of conjunctivitis such as discharge from the eyes, sample of the discharge may be sent to lab for testing.



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