We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Advice for Patients |

Chlamydia Screening: A Routine Test FREE

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2009;163(6):592. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2009.99.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis. Any sexually active person can become infected with chlamydia by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex. It can also be passed from an infected mother to her infant during vaginal childbirth. The highest rates of chlamydia are in persons aged 15 to 24 years; an estimated 6% to 10% of these adolescents and young women test positive for chlamydia.


It is common for people who are infected with chlamydia to have no symptoms, or very mild symptoms that may be easy to ignore. Young women may have a burning sensation during urination, abnormal vaginal discharge, or bleeding between menstrual periods. Men may have a burning sensation during urination or discharge from the penis.


Chlamydia can damage young women's reproductive organs and lead to problems such as infertility.


Because chlamydia infections are common and have particular consequences for young women, and because most young women and girls have no symptoms during a chlamydia infection, it is essential for sexually active young women to be tested regularly. A study in this month's Archives showed that routine chlamydia screening in a pediatric urgent care clinic was a new and feasible way to provide chlamydia screening to female adolescents.

Yearly testing is recommended for all women younger than 25 years who have been sexually active and for anyone who is pregnant.


  • Some people may be scared that the test will be painful or embarrassing. Today, screening can be done using a urine sample or vaginal swab. Check with your provider to see if these tests are available at your clinic.

  • Some people do not get tested because they do not believe their partner “looks like a person who has chlamydia.” However, anyone who has ever been sexually active could have chlamydia, so everyone should be tested.

  • Some people do not get tested because they do not have any symptoms. Most young women who have a chlamydia infection do not have symptoms, so screening tests are important for everyone.

  • Some adolescents do not get tested because they are worried their parents will be angry. There are many ways for adolescents to be tested for STIs confidentially, without notifying parents.


The best way to prevent an STI like chlamydia is to abstain from sexual activity or to be in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship (with a partner who has been tested). Latex male condoms can reduce the risk of transmission of chlamydia if used consistently and correctly.


  • You may be able to be tested at your regular physician's office or urgent care clinic.

  • Planned Parenthood.

  • Public health clinics.

  • Residents of certain states can use the Web site www.iwantthekit.org for free, valid testing for a few STIs.




To find this and other Advice for Patients articles, go to the Advice for Patients link on the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine Web site at http://www.archpediatrics.com.


Box Section Ref ID

The Advice for Patients feature is a public service of Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. The information and recommendations appearing on this page are appropriate in most instances, but they are not a substitute for medical diagnosis. For specific information concerning your child's medical condition, Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine suggests that you consult your child's physician. This page may be photocopied noncommercially by physicians and other health care professionals to share with patients. To purchase bulk reprints, call 312/464-0776.




Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Submit a Comment


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

See Also...
Articles Related By Topic
Related Collections
PubMed Articles

The Rational Clinical Examination: Evidence-Based Clinical Diagnosis

The Rational Clinical Examination: Evidence-Based Clinical Diagnosis