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Chlamydia testing

Chlamydia is the most common STI reported among young people in Australia. Most people don’t realise they have chlamydia because they don’t see or feel that any symptoms. Without knowing it, people can pass it on to their sex partners so it’s important to get tested regularly.

There are two tests available which test for the presence of chlamydia trachomatis. These are:

See below for detailed information on the two tests available.

When to get tested

Testing is recommended for all sexually active people over the age of 30 years or who identifies themselves at risk. Testing is recommended for:

  • heterosexual people - once a year
  • men who have sex with men - more regularly
  • those at risk - more regularly

Treatment

Treatment is just a short course of antibiotics.

It’s important to wait to have sex again 7 days after you’ve finished your treatment

If your test comes back positive for chlamydia, a nurse or doctor will discuss with you ways to tell your current and past sexual partners, as it is recommended that they get tested too.

Further information

For more information on chlamydia testing, contact Adelaide Sexual Health Centre.

ChEx

ChEx is an express chlamydia screening for heterosexual men and women. The test is performed by taking a urine sample (from men) or a vaginal swab (from women). ChEx does not include blood tests, throat or rectal tests. Because of this, ChEx is not suitable for all people.

If you have no symptoms you can take your own vaginal or rectal swabs and a doctor or a nurse doesn’t need to examine you.

The results

In most cases your result will be available within 7 days.

A negative result means you have not been infected.

A positive result means that you have chlamydia and should get treated. Those that are pregnant will need to have a repeat test in 4 weeks to check it has gone.

Standard testing

It is recommended to use the full testing if:

  • you want a blood test
  • you have symptoms
  • need treatment of medications
  • you have had sex with someone who is known to have an STI or HIV
  • you are a man who has sex with other men
  • you have had sex with someone from overseas and you have not had a blood test for syphilis or HIV since
  • you use injecting drugs
  • you need a rectal or throat test

Testing procedures used

Unlike ChEx, standard testing can involve blood tests, swabs of the throat or rectum.

The results

In most cases your result will be available within 7 days.

A negative result means you have not been infected.

A positive result means that you have chlamydia and should get treated. Those that are pregnant will need to have a repeat test in 4 weeks to check it has gone.

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