You know your body better than anyone else, especially when it comes to your sexual and reproductive health. However, no matter how in tune you are with every cramp and twinge, sadly, some internal changes are undetectable, which is the case when it comes to one of the most common sexually transmitted infections, chlamydia. Considering how common chlamydia is in the UK, and the fact that left untreated it can lead to infertility, it's important to know just how this infection affects your health.
According to Ms. Rhonda Flemming, consultant gynaecologist at London Gynaecology, although chlamydia doesn't often present itself with obvious symptoms, "in some cases there is discharge and irregular bleeding," which can be major giveaways as to whether or not you have the infection.
If you don't notice those two symptoms, as the infection progresses, many people find that symptoms "increase with the severity of the disease." Rhonda says the next stage of symptoms can "include abdominal pain, fever, and abscess in the fallopian tube or ovary."
It's especially important not to ignore any abnormal changes you suspect are linked to your sexual health, because an infection like chlamydia can begin to affect your health in general. Ms. Flemming suggests women be on the lookout for very severe symptoms which "can include upper abdominal pain associated with liver adhesions, and fertility issues such as subfertility and ectopic pregnancy." Although it's important to be diligent with regards to symptoms, the only way to know for sure is to get tested.