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NHS Choices Condition

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The common treatment for chlamydia is a course of antibiotics.  If taken correctly it is more than 95% effective. The course of antibiotics can be either a single dose, or a longer course of up to two weeks. 

If there is a high chance that you have been infected with chlamydia, treatment may be started before you receive your test results. You will always be given treatment if your partner is found to have chlamydia.

The two most commonly prescribed antibiotics to treat chlamydia are:

  • Azithromycin (single dose)
  • Doxycycline (usually two capsules a day for a week)

Other less commonly prescribed antibiotics include Ofloxacin, Amoxicillin and Erythromycin.

It is important that you finish all the capsules prescribed to you. If you do not, the treatment may not be effective at getting rid of the infection.

You can discuss with your GP  which antibiotic is the most suitable for you. If you are pregnant, for example, some antibiotics may not be suitable, but alternatives are available. Azithromycin, Amoxicillin and Erythromycin are all suitable for pregnant women..

Antibiotics used to treat chlamydia may interact with the combined contraceptive pill and the contraceptive patch. If you use these methods of contraception, you can discuss with your GP or nurse which additional contraception is suitable for this time.

Side effects

The side effects of antibiotics are usually mild, the most common side effects include:

  • stomach pain,
  • diarrhoea, and
  • feeling sick.

Occasionally, Doxycycline can cause a skin rash if you are exposed to too much sunlight (photosensitivity).

Sexual partners

Chlamydia is easily passed on through intimate sexual contact. If you are diagnosed with the infection, anyone you have recently had sex with in the last six months may also have it. It is important that your current partner and any other recent sexual partners are tested and treated.

Your local genitourinary medicine (GUM) or sexual health clinic may be able to help by notifying any of your previous partners on your behalf. A contact slip can be sent to them explaining that they may have been exposed to a sexually transmitted infection (STI) and suggesting that they go for a check up. The slip sometimes notes what the infection is but will not have your name on it, so your confidentiality is protected.

If you or your current partner is diagnosed with chlamydia, you should not have sex until you have both finished your course of treatment.

view information about Chlamydia on www.nhs.co.uk »

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