Do you have chlamydia forever


How Long Does It Take For Chlamydia To Show Up on Test Results?

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Can Chlamydia Lay Dormant And Be Passed On?

Because chlamydia can be dormant for years without being symptomatic, infected persons may easily transmit the disease to sexual partners without knowing. The ability to lie dormant may also be a reason why chlamydia is so good at hiding in the digestive system despite being eradicated elsewhere.

Chlamydia Dormancy Facts

Chlamydia can lie dormant in your body for many years and cause a low-grade infection that rarely presents any flare-ups. There is a greater chance of flare-up if your immune system has become weakened due to a severe cold or flu, cancer, HIV, or other severe illnesses. Although some symptoms can appear within weeks of contact, there have been reports of chlamydia remaining dormant for over twenty years. If you have had recent sexual contact and wonder about chlamydia infections, don’t hesitate to test. Listen to your body. If you’ve had any unprotected sexual encounters and want to be tested, contact myLAB Box™.

Chlamydia Can Show On A Test Seven Days After Exposure

Sexually transmitted infections and diseases are spreading in record amounts lately. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently estimated that there are currently 110 million cases of STIs in the United States alone. So we completely understand why people are saying “I don’t know where to get tested for STDs near me.” These stats are scary, and the whole process can seem overwhelming and nerve-wracking. The good news is that the whole process is not nearly as scary as you may think. In fact, you can now test at home and it only takes 5 minutes to complete. Now, isn’t your health and ease of mind worth a measly 5 minutes?

A sexually transmitted infection (STI) doesn’t always strike immediately. Take chlamydia, for example. This is one of the most common STIs in the United States. In fact, the CDC* estimates that are roughly 2.86 million chlamydia infections each year. Considering that this STI is so rampant, we often receive questions about the incubation period for chlamydia.

In this blog, let’s explore the common symptoms of chlamydia, learn a bit more about how this infection affects the body, and discuss the incubation period for this infection.

What is Chlamydia?

First things first, let’s take a closer look at the infection itself. After all, leaving a case of chlamydia untreated can lead to health complications. This STI is contracted from unprotected sexual activity with someone who is infected. By sexual activity, we are referring to vaginal, oral, or anal sex.

Most people who have been infected don’t often realize that they are carrying chlamydia. Truthfully, this particular infection typically does not show any visible signs or symptoms at all. In situations when symptoms are experienced, we’ve listed the common signs to keep an eye out for.

Chlamydia Symptoms in Men:

For men, the most common symptoms of chlamydia can include:

  • A “burning sensation” while urinating
  • White, cloudy or watery discharge from the penis
  • A pain in and around the testicles

Chlamydia Symptoms in Women:

In certain situations, chlamydia can be even more serious for women. Symptoms are often mistaken for a bladder or vaginal infection. However, health complications for women who have untreated chlamydia can be quite serious, including infertility.

Here are the most common symptoms:

  • A “burning sensation” while urinating
  • An abnormal vaginal discharge that may have an odor
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Painful periods or bleeding between periods
  • A fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Itching or burning around the vagina

Know the Incubation Period for Chlamydia

At this point, two things are clear. First, there are different common symptoms of chlamydia for men and women. Second, many people do not experience any symptoms at all. That’s a troubling prospect. While regular testing is always the smartest course of action, it is sometimes helpful to know a bit more about a potential infection first.

This brings us to our main discussion point: the incubation period for chlamydia. But first, what is an incubation period? The incubation period is the time between when a person is first exposed to an infection to the time that person shows the first signs of symptoms. Just as important, you probably want to know how soon you can test for an infection and know for sure it’s an accurate result. This means you will want to know the window period. After an individual is exposed to an STD and becomes infected, there is a period of time before a test will show a positive result is called the window period. Let’s tackle these questions together.

In short, the incubation period for chlamydia is poorly defined and most experts would say it is often seven to 14 days or longer. The window period however, we break down in more detail below.

To be more specific, here are the main points to remember:

  • When should you take your first chlamydia test after potential exposure? Seven days later.
  • How long can it take to receive positive test results? Seven days or longer.
  • If a person tests positive for chlamydia, the infection is easily curable with proper treatment. However, once treatment is complete, that’s not necessarily the end of the situation. In most cases, re-testing is highly recommended.
  • When should you retest for chlamydia after completing your treatment? Three weeks after end of treatment.
  • When should you retest after testing negative? Test once every three months.

Please note: Re-testing is especially important if you have multiple sex partners and had unprotected sex.

All STIs Are Different

Now that you’ve learned the incubation period for chlamydia and its window period, you might be wondering about other common STIs. Well, when it comes to sexually transmitted infections, each STI is different. As such, the timing also differs when it comes to incubation periods, window periods, testing, and re-testing.

When it comes to your sexual health, you can never be too careful. Every sexually active person should be vigilant about tracking down and eradicating these potentially dangerous STIs. After all, testing is the only way for someone to know their status for sure.

Where to Get Tested for STDs Near Me:

Back in the day, you were at the mercy of the local clinic if you wanted to be properly screened for sexually transmitted infections or diseases. It was either that or setting a doctor’s appointment. Both of these traditional in-person testing methods are still the first place many people turn. But for many of us, they’re not exactly the best possible solution. Just because it’s the old way to do it doesn’t mean it’s the best way to do it! In fact, these testing solutions come with a fair amount of caveats and hang-ups. And it leaves room for plenty of excuses to get in the way of people following through with their test.

Seven Chlamydia In Home Test Options

Think seven at-home chlamydia test options is too much? We certainly don’t think so! After all, chlamydia is the second most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. At myLAB Box, we recognize that everyone is different and all consumers have special interests and needs. Truthfully, that’s why myLAB Box offers a variety of testing options.

How to Test From Home

Once you decide which test kit it right for you, the process is the same. By that, we mean that it is convenient and easy to use. You never have to step into a doctor’s office for a sexually transmitted infection test ever again!

myLAB Box makes the testing process as simple as possible. You’ll find the following components included in every kit:

  • The urine, vaginal swab and/or blood sample collection kit
  • Easy to follow instructions
  • A postage paid return envelope to send your samples in for testing
  • Free 2-way shipping
  • Fast and easy access to your results online
  • A free telemedicine consultation with a physician in your state (in the event you test positive)

As you can see, the process is simple. If you’re not sure what type of sample is required or which test is right for you, you might want to consider one of myLAB Box’s test combos:

Testing for Gonorrhea Too

If you aren’t tired of all the good news yet, here’s one more perk. When you order a chlamydia test through myLAB Box, you are also getting a gonorrhea test! That means, for the same price as any of myLAB Box’s other single-infection tests, this kit includes the results for a second infection. This is largely due to the fact these two infections are often mistaken for each other. In addition, they can often be found together.

Your 7 Home Chlamydia Test Options

There are seven testing options available for people who want to screen for chlamydia from home.

1. Test for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea

This is the most basic Chlamydia test available. This option is perfect for those have been, and believe to have been, exposed to this specifically one of these two infections.

2. Test for Oral, Rectal and Genital Chlamydia Infections

Contrary to many people’s beliefs, taking a standard chlamydia test does not guarantee a proper diagnosis. In fact, a false diagnosis is actually quite likely. You see, people who practice oral and anal sex need to use a specialized type of chlamydia test. An Extragenital test will screen for the infection in the genitals, mouth and rectum. Luckily, this three-site Extragenital test is one of the seven at-home chlamydia test options available through myLAB Box.

3. Test for Causes of Abnormal Vaginal Discharge

The V-Box tests for all common causes of abnormal vaginal discharge: yeast, bacterial vaginosis, trichomoniasis, chlamydia, gonorrhea.

4. Test for the Basics

myLAB Box’s Safe Box checks for the five sexually transmitted infections that are vital to test for: HIV (I & II), Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Trichomoniasis.

5. Test with myLAB Box’s Most Popular Test

The Uber Box, myLAB Box’s most popular product, screens for eight common infections, including HIV (I & II), Hepatitis C, Herpes Simplex Type II, Syphilis, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Trichomoniasis.

6. Test with Your Partner

The Love Box is the amped-up Uber Box. It tests for the same eight infections, but comes with two test kits so you can your partner can test together.

7. Test with myLAB Box’s Most Comprehensive Option

The Total Box is not only myLAB Box’s most comprehensive test kit; it is the most comprehensive at-home test kit on the market, period. This 14-panel kit is the test kit of all test kits. It screens for the following: HIV (I & II), Hepatitis C, Herpes type-II, Syphilis, Chlamydia (genital, throat and rectal), Gonorrhea (genital, throat and rectal), Trichomoniasis and Mycoplasma genitalium. HPV is an optional add-on for women 30 years of age and older.

Choose Your Own Path to Protection

myLAB Box’s home testing kits provide all of the benefits of an in-person screening without your ever needing to set foot outside. The only difference is that now you are in total control of where and when you test. Now there are no more excuses!

For some, going to the clinic may be the right choice. For others, at home STD testing is the best method. No matter how you choose to get checked for STDs, it is a critical step in protecting your overall health. Regular screenings empower you to take active control over your body and your love life.

Now that you see how easy it is to screen at home, you’ll never need to “Hmm, where to get tested for STDs near me?” again. The answer is right in front of you!

To learn more, check out myLAB Box’s helpful “Incubation and Testing Timelines Guide.”

Test Again

After all is said and done, if you test positive with myLAB Box’s chlamydia test kit, help is readily available. myLAB Box will quickly connect you with a free phone consultation with a physician. Proper treatment is the key to successful recovery, so this consultation is a major boon for myLAB Box customers. In the end, testing should be a regular part of any sexually active person’s healthy routine.


Reviewed by Luis Ferdinand M. Papa, MD, MHA

Dormant Sexually Transmitted Diseases


I had unprotected sex before I met my husband. I’m worried because I know that some sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can lie dormant for a long time before becoming active. Is it possible I could have an STD and not know it? Is there any way to detect dormant diseases in my system?


This a very common question and you should never be embarrassed to ask your doctor about your concerns. There are STDs that can lie dormant and you can continue to be asymptomatic for years. The most important STD to test for in this regard is HIV, which can lie dormant for many years. Anyone who has ever had unprotected sex should consider getting this blood test.

Another important test is RPR/VDRL, the test for syphilis. Cultures of the cervix can be used to test for chlamydia and gonorrhea, other diseases that can possibly lie dormant. Herpes is unlikely to lie dormant without your experiencing symptoms, but a test can be performed if there is a questionable lesion present.

Doctors also usually test for hepatitis B, which is a disease that can be sexually transmitted and may have a dormancy period. The most common dormant disease I see in my practice is human papilloma virus (HPV). This is a virus that causes venereal warts. However, the warts may be microscopic and therefore very difficult to detect — that’s why it’s important to be tested for this STD. HPV affects the cervix, causing a precancerous condition called dysplasia. There are effective treatment methods for HPV, but early detection is important.

I know this is scary to think about, but it’s important to ask your doctor about testing — especially if you’re considering pregnancy in the future.

The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child’s condition.

  • By Elizabeth Pryor, MD, FACOG

American Baby

10 Essential Facts About Chlamydia

2. Chlamydia Is Caused by Sexually Transmitted Bacteria

The bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis causes chlamydia infection, which usually occurs in the genital tract, so the cervix in women and the penis in men. In both women and men, the bacteria may also infect the rectum and the throat.

“Infections are spread during any kind of sexual activity: vaginal, anal, or oral intercourse,” says Jonathan Schaffir, MD, an ob-gyn at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.

Chlamydia trachomatis can also cause conjunctivitis (pink eye) if the bacteria come into contact with the eyelids or the clear membrane covering the white of the eye.

Because chlamydia infections often cause no symptoms, individuals who have one may not seek medical attention or get treated for it. However, anyone who is infected with chlamydia can pass it to other people, who can, in turn, pass it to others.

3. Young Sexually Active Women Are Most Susceptible

Women between ages 15 and 24 are most likely to be newly infected with chlamydia, according to the CDC, but anyone who is sexually active — male or female — can be infected. Men who have oral or anal sex with men are also at risk, notes the CDC. The CDC recommends regular chlamydia screenings for people at an increased risk of contracting it.

You should be screened annually for chlamydia if you are:

  • A sexually active woman under age 25
  • A woman age 25 or older who has multiple sexual partners
  • A woman whose sexual partner may have multiple sexual partners
  • Pregnant and under age 25 or pregnant and age 25 or older with an increased risk (pregnant women at risk for chlamydia should be screened as early as possible in the pregnancy, with a repeat screening in the third trimester)
  • A man who has sex with men
  • At an increased risk for other health reasons

“I would emphasize that young women should be screened if they engage in any sexual behavior that puts them at risk because often has no symptoms, and early treatment is important to avoid long-term damage and infertility,” Dr. Schaffir says.

Screening for chlamydia is painless: It usually involves testing a urine sample or a specimen swabbed from the vagina or penis. Some lab tests for chlamydia can use specimens from the throat or rectum.

4. Chlamydia Is Only Contagious From Person to Person

You can only get chlamydia by having intimate sexual contact with an infected person, not from casual contact, touching another person’s clothing, or consuming contaminated food or water.

“The chlamydia organism lives only in human cells and cannot be transmitted by external contact, such as towels or toilet seats,” Schaffir says.

5. Symptoms Can Differ for Men and Women

“By and large, most cases of chlamydia are asymptomatic — they are picked up by screening, which is why it’s so important to have good screening programs in place,” notes Dr. Stoner. Men or women who have chlamydia symptoms may experience painful urination.

Women may also have these symptoms:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Smelly discharge from the cervix
  • Pain during sex
  • Bleeding after sex
  • Bleeding between periods

And men may have these symptoms:

  • Discharge from the penis
  • Painful testicles

6. Chlamydia Infection May Have Long-Term Health Consequences

For women, the long-term effects of an untreated chlamydia infection may include:

  • Severe infection with pain and fever requiring a hospital stay
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease, an infection of the upper reproductive tract
  • Scarring in the reproductive tract that causes infertility
  • Higher risk of ectopic pregnancy

Men are less likely than women to have major health problems linked to chlamydia, although they can develop epididymitis, an inflammation of a structure within the testicles called the epididymis that can result in infertility.

A chlamydia infection can sometimes result in reactive arthritis in both men and women.

7. A Woman Can Pass Chlamydia on to Her Newborn During Childbirth

When a baby is exposed to the mother’s untreated chlamydia infection during childbirth, the infant can contract an eye infection or pneumonia, requiring treatment with antibiotics. Chlamydia during pregnancy also raises the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.

8. Antibiotics Are a Highly Effective Cure for Chlamydia Infection

Antibiotics prescribed for chlamydia include:

  • Zithromax (azithromycin)
  • Doryx (doxycycline)

A single oral dose of Zithromax is the most common treatment. Other drugs may be given in varying doses for a period of up to a week. Most cases of chlamydia clear up within a week after you start on antibiotics.

“If you think you have been exposed to chlamydia,” Stoner says, “see your healthcare provider to receive antibiotic medication to prevent the onset of infection.”

The partners of individuals diagnosed with chlamydia will need treatment, too, and in some states they can get it without a doctor visit through a practice called “expedited partner therapy,” in which the first person treated delivers the treatment to their partner or partners.

9. You Can Get Chlamydia More Than Once

With some diseases, having one infection makes you immune to future infections. That’s not the case with chlamydia. If you engage in sexual activity with a person who has a chlamydia infection, you can get it again, even if you’ve just completed treatment for it.

“Both partners should be treated before reinitiating sexual intercourse to prevent relapse,” Schaffir says.

10. Chlamydia Can Be Prevented

The most effective way to avoid getting a sexually transmitted infection is to not have sex. However, if you wish to have sexual contact, you can reduce your risk of infection with these actions:

  • Minimizing the number of partners with whom you have intimate contact
  • Asking your partners to get screened for STDs (and getting screened yourself) before engaging in sexual activity
  • Always using latex condoms when having intercourse of any kind

Additional reporting by Ingrid Strauch.

Chlamydia – CDC Fact Sheet

Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted disease (STD) that can be easily cured. If left untreated, chlamydia can make it difficult for a woman to get pregnant.

Basic Fact Sheet | Detailed Version

Basic fact sheets are presented in plain language for individuals with general questions about sexually transmitted diseases. The content here can be .

Print versionpdf icon

Chlamydia is a common STD that can infect both men and women. It can cause serious, permanent damage to a woman’s reproductive system. This can make it difficult or impossible for her to get pregnant later on. Chlamydia can also cause a potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy that occurs outside the womb).

You can get chlamydia by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has chlamydia.

If your sex partner is male you can still get chlamydia even if he does not ejaculate (cum).

If you’ve had chlamydia and were treated in the past, you can still get infected again. This can happen if you have unprotected sex with someone who has chlamydia.

If you are pregnant, you can give chlamydia to your baby during childbirth.

How can I reduce my risk of getting chlamydia?

The only way to avoid STDs is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.

If you are sexually active, you can do the following things to lower your chances of getting chlamydia:

  • Be in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and has negative STD test results;
  • Use latex condoms the right way every time you have sex.

Am I at risk for chlamydia?

Anyone who has sex can get chlamydia through unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex. However, sexually active young people are at a higher risk of getting chlamydia. This is due to behaviors and biological factors common among young people. Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men are also at risk since chlamydia can spread through oral and anal sex.

Have an honest and open talk with your health care provider. Ask whether you should be tested for chlamydia or other STDs. If you are a sexually active woman younger than 25 years, you should get a test for chlamydia every year. If you are an older woman with risk factors such as new or multiple sex partners, or a sex partner who has an STD, you should get a test for chlamydia every year. Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men; as well as pregnant women should also get tested for chlamydia.

I’m pregnant. How does chlamydia affect my baby?

If you are pregnant and have chlamydia, you can pass the infection to your baby during delivery. This could cause an eye infection or pneumonia in your newborn. Having chlamydia may also make it more likely to deliver your baby too early.

If you are pregnant, you should get tested for chlamydia at your first prenatal visit. Testing and treatment are the best ways to prevent health problems.

How do I know if I have chlamydia?

Most people who have chlamydia have no symptoms. If you do have symptoms, they may not appear until several weeks after you have sex with an infected partner. Even when chlamydia causes no symptoms, it can damage your reproductive system.

Women with symptoms may notice

  • An abnormal vaginal discharge;
  • A burning sensation when urinating.

Symptoms in men can include

  • A discharge from their penis;
  • A burning sensation when urinating;
  • Pain and swelling in one or both testicles (although this is less common).

Men and women can also get infected with chlamydia in their rectum. This happens either by having receptive anal sex, or by spread from another infected site (such as the vagina). While these infections often cause no symptoms, they can cause

  • Rectal pain;
  • Discharge;
  • Bleeding.

You should be examined by your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms or if your partner has an STD or symptoms of an STD. STD symptoms can include an unusual sore, a smelly discharge, burning when urinating, or bleeding between periods.

How will my doctor know if I have chlamydia?

Laboratory tests can diagnose chlamydia. Your health care provider may ask you to provide a urine sample or may use (or ask you to use) a cotton swab to get a sample from your vagina to test for chlamydia.

Can chlamydia be cured?

Yes, chlamydia can be cured with the right treatment. It is important that you take all of the medication your doctor prescribes to cure your infection. When taken properly it will stop the infection and could decrease your chances of having complications later on. You should not share medication for chlamydia with anyone.

Repeat infection with chlamydia is common. You should be tested again about three months after you are treated, even if your sex partner(s) was treated.

I was treated for chlamydia. When can I have sex again?

You should not have sex again until you and your sex partner(s) have completed treatment. If your doctor prescribes a single dose of medication, you should wait seven days after taking the medicine before having sex. If your doctor prescribes a medicine for you to take for seven days, you should wait until you have taken all of the doses before having sex.

What happens if I don’t get treated?

The initial damage that chlamydia causes often goes unnoticed. However, chlamydia can lead to serious health problems.

If you are a woman, untreated chlamydia can spread to your uterus and fallopian tubes (tubes that carry fertilized eggs from the ovaries to the uterus). This can cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). PID often has no symptoms, however some women may have abdominal and pelvic pain. Even if it doesn’t cause symptoms initially, PID can cause permanent damage to your reproductive system. PID can lead to long-term pelvic pain, inability to get pregnant, and potentially deadly ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the uterus).

Men rarely have health problems linked to chlamydia. Infection sometimes spreads to the tube that carries sperm from the testicles, causing pain and fever. Rarely, chlamydia can prevent a man from being able to have children.

Untreated chlamydia may also increase your chances of getting or giving HIV – the virus that causes AIDS.

STD information and referrals to STD Clinics
1-800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636)
TTY: 1-888-232-6348
In English, en Español

CDC National Prevention Information Network (NPIN)
P.O. Box 6003
Rockville, MD 20849-6003
E-mail: [email protected]

American Sexual Health Association (ASHA)external icon
P.O. Box 13827
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-3827

By Pharmacy2U Published: October, 19th 2016

Around 435,000 diagnoses of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) were made in England in 2015. That’s thousands of people taking steps to tackle untreated STIs – but what about the ones who remain undiagnosed?

Many common STIs are notorious for not displaying any symptoms, meaning they may often go undetected. In the absence of STI side effects, it’s possible you won’t realise you’ve contracted an infection – or you may be aware but are hoping it will go away on its own. But this isn’t the case. Without treatment, many common STIs such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea can lead to potentially serious problems.

The good news is most STIs can be treated, although treatment is most effective when started as soon as possible. If you’ve had unprotected sex with a new partner or your sexual partner has any symptoms, you should seek medical advice and arrange an online consultation with Pharmacy2U to avoid long-term damage in the future.


With more than 200,000 diagnoses made in 2015, chlamydia is the most commonly diagnosed STI in England. Around three-quarters of people who have this bacterial infection will not show signs and symptoms. When symptoms of chlamydia are present, these can include pain during urination, unusual discharge and swelling of the testicles.

Long-term effects of chlamydia
Left untreated, chlamydia can lead to potentially serious complications.
In men, these include:

  • Inflammation of the testicles. Chlamydia can spread to the tubes that hold sperm (the epididymis), causing pain and swelling. This inflammatory condition is known as epididymitis and can affect fertility if left untreated. Antibiotics are typically used to treat epididymitis.
  • Reactive arthritis. Sexually acquired reactive arthritis (SARA) is where your joints, eyes or urethra become inflamed. Treatments such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can relieve the symptoms, but there is currently no cure. This condition can occur in women who have had chlamydia too, although it is less likely.

In women, long-term effects include:

  • Inflammation of the pelvis. Untreated chlamydia can spread to the womb, ovaries or fallopian tube, leading to a condition called pelvis inflammatory disease (PID). This can lead to infertility, chronic pelvic pain and an increased risk of ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside of the uterus).
  • Complications in pregnancy. If you’re pregnant with the infection and haven’t had chlamydia treatment, you can pass the infection to your baby. This can lead to babies developing infections such as conjunctivitis and pneumonia – and can cause premature birth.


Gonorrhoea is the second most common bacterial STI in the UK after chlamydia – with more than 41,000 cases of gonorrhoea diagnosed in England alone in 2015.

Anyone who has unprotected sex can catch it, however, symptoms don’t always show. One in 10 infected men show no symptoms and half of all women with the STI don’t experience any gonorrhoea symptoms. When symptoms do show, they typically include thin white, yellow or green discharge from the vagina or penis, pain when urinating and bleeding between periods.

Long-term effects of gonorrhoea

If you’re worried you may be at risk of this infection, it’s important to get tested as soon as possible. Left untreated, gonorrhoea can spread to other body parts, leading to more serious health problems in the future, including:

  • Pelvis inflammatory disease (PID). 10-20% of all untreated gonorrhoea cases lead to this infection of the female upper genital tract, leading to chronic pelvis pain, ectopic pregnancy, and infertility.
  • Problems during pregnancy. Pregnant women with untreated gonorrhoea can suffer premature labour and even miscarriage. The infection can pass to the baby, causing them to be born with conjunctivitis. If the baby isn’t treated with antibiotics as soon as possible it can lead to permanent vision damage.
  • Infection of the testicles. Untreated gonorrhoea can cause a painful infection in the prostate gland and testicles. In a small number of cases this can lead to reduced fertility.
  • Life-threatening infections. Although rare, untreated gonorrhoea can spread through the bloodstream and cause dangerous infections such as septicaemia in other parts of the body.

HIV and Aids

An estimated 103,700 people in the UK were living with HIV at the end of 2014. The virus attacks the immune system – leaving you more prone to infections and disease – and is primarily caught by having unprotected sex.

Though there is no cure for HIV, early diagnosis and treatment can enable most people with the virus to live long and healthy lives. However, around 18,100 people living with HIV in the UK do not know they are infected with HIV and have not yet been diagnosed.

The main symptom is a flu-like illness, also known as seroconversion illness. This occurs in up to eight out of 10 people infected with HIV (usually a few weeks after infection) and can consist of fever, sore throat and a body rash. Other symptoms include:

  • Tiredness
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Swollen glands

However, these are common symptoms for many other conditions – and once the initial symptoms wear off, HIV may not show any symptoms for years. But it’s crucial to get tested, as late diagnosis has a ten-fold increased risk of death compared to those diagnosed promptly.

Long-term effects of HIV

  • Weight loss
  • Chronic diarrhoea
  • Night sweats
  • Skin problems
  • Damage to the immune system

In 2014, 40% of people newly diagnosed with HIV were diagnosed late, after they should have started treatment – putting themselves at risk to the serious complications above.

To test for HIV, you’ll need an HIV test. With Pharmacy2U, you can provide a blood sample to test for signs of infection from the convenience of your own home.

This year is also the fifth annual National HIV Testing Week. Starting on Saturday 19th November 2016, the week promotes HIV testing to gay and bisexual men and black African men and women (the groups with the highest HIV rates).

But with an estimated 36.7 million people worldwide living with HIV in 2015, it’s important that anyone who has had sex without a condom and suspects they may be at risk of HIV gets tested.

Does chylamedia stay in the body even if its been cured?

Nope! Chlamydia is easily cured with antibiotics. Chlamydia is a bacterial infection (like strep throat or an ear infection), which means that once you’ve been treated and tested negative for it (to make sure the antibiotics worked), it’s gone. Your nurse or doctor will tell you exactly what type of antibiotics you need, and when to get tested again to make sure the antibiotics worked.

The only way that chlamydia would stay in your body after you started treatment was if you didn’t take all of the prescribed medicine. That’s why it’s important to take all of it, even if symptoms go away before you finish the medication.

Both you and your partner(s) need to be treated for chlamydia before you have sex again, or you could get re-infected. Just like strep, you can get it many times in your life – getting treated for it once doesn’t mean you’re good for life.

You can prevent the spread of chlamydia and other STDs by using condoms every time you have sex. Learn more about chlamydia.

Tags: chlamydia, condoms, safer sex, STDs

Chlamydia is known as a “silent” disease because most people who are infected have no symptoms. In people who develop symptoms, it may take several weeks after exposure for symptoms to appear.

Symptoms in women include:

  • Discharge from the vagina
  • Burning or pain when urinating
  • Urinating more often
  • Bleeding between periods or after sex
  • Pain in the lower stomach area
  • Lower back pain
  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Pain during sex

Symptoms in men include:

  • Watery, white drip or discharge from the penis
  • Burning or pain when urinating
  • Burning and itching around the opening of the penis
  • Urinating more often
  • Swollen, tender testicles

Men or women who have anal sex can get chlamydia in the anus, which can cause pain, discharge or bleeding. Chlamydia can also be found in the throats of women and men who have oral sex with an infected partner.

Diagnosing Chlamydia

There are laboratory tests to diagnose chlamydia. Some can be performed on urine; other tests require that a sample be collected from a site such as the penis or cervix. The Sexual Health Clinic uses a urine test for chlamydia in all clients.

Annual chlamydia testing is suggested for the following:

  • All women 25 years old and younger who have sex
  • Older women at risk (a new sex partner you have known for less than six months or multiple sex partners)
  • All pregnant women
  • Men who have sex with men

Stop having sex and see a doctor immediately if you have any of the following genital symptoms:

  • Discharge or burning during urination
  • An unusual sore or rash

Once diagnosed, a person should tell all recent sex partners so they can see a health care provider and be treated. Avoid sex until treatment is complete.

Treating Chlamydia

Chlamydia can be easily treated and cured with antibiotics. People with HIV and chlamydia should receive the same treatment as those who are HIV negative.

Once diagnosed, a person should tell all recent sex partners so they can see a health care provider and be treated. Avoid sex until treatment is complete. Women whose sex partners have not been properly treated are at high risk for re-infection. Having repeated infections increases a woman’s risk of serious reproductive health problems, including infertility.

Retesting should be considered for women, especially teens, three to four months after treatment. This is especially true if a woman does not know if her sex partner received treatment.

Long-Term Risks of Untreated Infection

If untreated, chlamydia can develop into serious reproductive and other health problems with both short-term and long-term effects. Like the disease itself, the damage is often “silent.”

In women, untreated infection can cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). This happens in 10 percent to 15 percent women with untreated chlamydia. PID can lead to internal abscesses (pus-filled “pockets” that are hard to cure) and long-lasting pelvic pain. PID can damage the fallopian tubes enough to cause infertility or increase the risk of ectopic pregnancy (life-threatening pregnancy outside the uterus).

According to the CDC, untreated chlamydia may increase a person’s chance of acquiring or transmitting HIV.

Problems among men are rare. Infection can cause epididymitis, a painful condition of the testicles that can lead to infertility if not treated.

Chlamydia infection can cause reactive arthritis, formerly known as Reiter’s syndrome, although this is rare. Symptoms include arthritis, skin lesions and swelling of the eye and urethra.

More Information

See your health care provider, visit the Sexual Health Clinic webpages or call the Sexual Health Clinic at (702) 759-0702.

What is chlamydia?

Chlamydia is one of the most common sexually transmitted infection in the USA. In men the chlamydia bacteria can infect the penis (urethra), anus, or eye. In women, the bacteria can infect the female reproductive organs (vagina, cervix, fallopian tubes), anus, urethra, and eye.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1,526,658 cases of chlamydia were reported in 2015 (in the United States). However, there are many more people with chlamydia who don’t know they have it because they’ve never had symptoms.

Who is most likely to get chlamydia?

Chlamydia is common among:

  • People under age 25
  • People who have more than one sexual partner
  • People whose sexual partners have more than one partner
  • People who don’t use condoms
  • People with a history of STIs

Chlamydia is spread from person-to-person during unprotected sex. It can be passed through vaginal, anal, and oral sex. It can also be passed to the eye by a hand or other body part moistened with infected secretions. Chlamydia can be passed from a woman infected with chlamydia to her baby during delivery. Chlamydia cannot be spread by kissing, toilet seats, bed linens, doorknobs, swimming pools, hot tubs, bathtubs, silverware, or sharing clothes.

Around 90% percent of women and 70% of men with chlamydia have no symptoms. If they do have symptoms, the symptoms usually start anywhere from 1-3 weeks after becoming infected.

Symptoms of chlamydia can include:

  • A clear or milky discharge from the penis
  • A burning feeling when urinating
  • The need to urinate more than usual
  • Swollen or painful testicles
  • Pain, itching, bleeding, and/or mucus discharge of the rectum (for chlamydia in the anus)
  • Redness, itching, and/or discharges of the eyes (for chlamydia in the eyes)

These symptoms are very similar to the symptoms of gonorrhea, another sexually transmitted infection.

Where can I get tested and treated for chlamydia?

You can be tested and treated for chlamydia at family planning health centers, private doctors’ offices, STI clinics, hospital clinics, and health departments. If you are less than 25 years old and have ever had sexual intercourse, talk to your health care provider about getting tested for chlamydia at least once a year and more often if you change sex partners or have had chlamydia or other STIs before.

Your health care provider can diagnose chlamydia by taking a urine sample or by placing a small swab in the end of the penis. It’s important to get a test in order to tell if you have gonorrhea or chlamydia. They have very similar symptoms, but each needs a different treatment. If the test comes back positive for chlamydia for either you or your sexual partner(s) you may need to have further testing to check for other possible infections.

Is there a cure for chlamydia?

Yes. Chlamydia is easy to treat and cure, but remember that just because you’ve had it once doesn’t mean you can’t get infected again. It’s important that you get treated early so that more serious health problems don’t occur. Both sexual partners must get treated at the same time so you don’t re-infect each other. Your health care provider will either give you a single dose of medicine (azithromycin) to take in the office before you leave or a prescription to fill (doxycycline) that you will need to take 2 times a day, for 7 days. Your health care provider will decide which medicine is right for you. Remember to take ALL of the medicine as prescribed, even if the symptoms go away. This is because the infection can still be in your body.

Is chlamydia dangerous?

If chlamydia isn’t treated, it can cause an infection of the tube that connects the testicles to the urethra of the penis (this is called epididymitis). It can also lead to serious complications in women.

How can I prevent spreading chlamydia?

If you think you have chlamydia, the first thing you need to do is stop having sexual intercourse and get tested and treated. Ask your health care provider if you can get a prescription for your partner (this is called expedited partner therapy, or EPT), or find out if your partner can be seen by your health care provider or theirs to get treated. You’ll need to let all current and past sexual partners know that you have chlamydia (anyone that you have had vaginal, anal or oral sex with in the past 60 days – or the most recent sexual partners). You may find this hard to do, but it’s very important so that those infected can get treated before more serious health problems occur.

You can do this in a couple of different ways:

  • You can tell them face to face, over the phone or via a text message.
  • You can use an anonymous notification application, such as: an email from a reliable website such as This website will send a confidential email card to your partner(s) for free. Another website, will send an anonymous text to your partner(s).

Research has shown that notifying your partner(s) in real time or face to face is the best way to get your partner treated.

Remember: Don’t have sex until you have finished treatment and your health care provider tells you that it’s OK to have sex. Generally that means waiting at least 1 week after you were treated with azithromycin or after you have completed 7 days of doxycycline. You also have to wait until your partner(s) have been treated to avoid getting infected again. Make sure you use a condom every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.

How can I avoid getting chlamydia?

The best way to lower your risk of getting chlamydia is not to have sexual intercourse. However, if you decide to have sexual intercourse, make sure you use a condom every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.

What types of birth control protect against chlamydia?

The only types of birth control that protect against chlamydia are male latex and polyurethane condoms and female condoms. Latex condoms are the best protection against chlamydia. Polyurethane condoms and female condoms also provide some protection against chlamydia.

If you’re concerned about chlamydia, here’s a tip on how to bring it up with your health care provider: It burns when I pee. Do I have an STI?

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

More than 30 different bacteria, viruses and parasites are known to be transmitted through sexual contact. Eight of these pathogens are linked to the greatest incidence of sexually transmitted disease. Of these 8 infections, 4 are currently curable: syphilis, gonorrhoea, chlamydia and trichomoniasis. The other 4 are viral infections which are incurable: hepatitis B, herpes simplex virus (HSV or herpes), HIV, and human papillomavirus (HPV). Symptoms or disease due to the incurable viral infections can be reduced or modified through treatment.

STIs are spread predominantly by sexual contact, including vaginal, anal and oral sex. Some STIs can also be spread through non-sexual means such as via blood or blood products. Many STIs—including syphilis, hepatitis B, HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhoea, herpes, and HPV—can also be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy and childbirth.

A person can have an STI without having obvious symptoms of disease. Common symptoms of STIs include vaginal discharge, urethral discharge or burning in men, genital ulcers, and abdominal pain.

Scope of the problem

STIs have a profound impact on sexual and reproductive health worldwide.

More than 1 million STIs are acquired every day. In 2016, WHO estimated 376 million new infections with 1 of 4 STIs: chlamydia (127 million), gonorrhoea (87 million), syphilis (6.3 million) and trichomoniasis (156 million). More than 500 million people are living with genital HSV (herpes) infection and an estimated 300 million women have an HPV infection, the primary cause of cervical cancer. An estimated 240 million people are living with chronic hepatitis B globally. Both HPV and hepatitis B infections are preventable with vaccination.

STIs can have serious consequences beyond the immediate impact of the infection itself.

  • STIs like herpes and syphilis can increase the risk of HIV acquisition three-fold or more.
  • Mother-to-child transmission of STIs can result in stillbirth, neonatal death, low-birth-weight and prematurity, sepsis, pneumonia, neonatal conjunctivitis, and congenital deformities. Approximately 1 million pregnant women were estimated to have active syphilis in 2016, resulting in over 350 000 adverse birth outcomes of which 200 000 occurred as stillbirth or neonatal death (5).
  • HPV infection causes 570 000 cases of cervical cancer and over 300 000 cervical cancer deaths each year (6).
  • STIs such as gonorrhoea and chlamydia are major causes of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and infertility in women.

Prevention of STIs

Counselling and behavioural approaches

Counselling and behavioural interventions offer primary prevention against STIs (including HIV), as well as against unintended pregnancies. These include:

  • comprehensive sexuality education, STI and HIV pre- and post-test counselling;
  • safer sex/risk-reduction counselling, condom promotion;
  • STI interventions targeted to key populations, such as sex workers, men who have sex with men and people who inject drugs; and
  • STI prevention education and counselling tailored to the needs of adolescents.

In addition, counselling can improve people’s ability to recognize the symptoms of STIs and increase the likelihood they will seek care or encourage a sexual partner to do so. Unfortunately, lack of public awareness, lack of training of health workers, and long-standing, widespread stigma around STIs remain barriers to greater and more effective use of these interventions.

Barrier methods

When used correctly and consistently, condoms offer one of the most effective methods of protection against STIs, including HIV. Female condoms are effective and safe,but are not used as widely by national programmes as male condoms.

Diagnosis of STIs

Accurate diagnostic tests for STIs are widely used in high-income countries. These are especially useful for the diagnosis of asymptomatic infections. However, in low- and middle-income countries, diagnostic tests are largely unavailable. Where testing is available, it is often expensive and geographically inaccessible; and patients often need to wait a long time (or need to return) to receive results. As a result, follow up can be impeded and care or treatment can be incomplete.

The only inexpensive, rapid tests currently available for STIs are for syphilis and HIV. The rapid syphilis test is already in use in some resource-limited settings. A rapid dual HIV/syphilis test is not available whereby a person can be tested for HIV and syphilis from a single finger-stick and using a single testing cartridge. These tests are accurate, can provide results in 15 to 20 minutes, and are easy to use with minimal training. Rapid syphilis tests have been shown to increase the number of pregnant women tested for syphilis. However, increased efforts are still needed in most low- and middle-income countries to ensure that all pregnant women receive a syphilis test.

Several rapid tests for other STIs are under development and have the potential to improve STI diagnosis and treatment, especially in resource-limited settings.

Treatment of STIs

Effective treatment is currently available for several STIs.

  • Three bacterial STIs (chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis) and one parasitic STI (trichomoniasis) are generally curable with existing, effective single-dose regimens of antibiotics.
  • For herpes and HIV, the most effective medications available are antivirals that can modulate the course of the disease, though they cannot cure the disease.
  • For hepatitis B, antiviral medications can help to fight the virus and slow damage to the liver.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) of STIs—in particular gonorrhoea—to antibiotics has increased rapidly in recent years and has reduced treatment options. Current Gonococcal AMR Surveillance Programme (GASP) have shown high rates of quinolone resistance, increasing azithromycin resistance and emerging resistance of extended-spectrum cephalosporins, last-line treatment. The emergence of decreased susceptibility of gonorrhoea to extended-spectrum cephalosporins together with AMR already shown to penicillins, sulphonamides, tetracyclines, quinolones and macrolides make gonorrhoea a multidrug-resistant organism. AMR for other STIs, though less common, also exists, making prevention and prompt treatment critical (7).

STI case management

Low- and middle-income countries rely on identifying consistent, easily recognizable signs and symptoms to guide treatment, without the use of laboratory tests. This is called syndromic management. This approach, which often relies on clinical algorithms, allows health workers to diagnose a specific infection on the basis of observed syndromes (e.g., vaginal discharge, urethral discharge, genital ulcers, abdominal pain).

Syndromic management is simple, assures rapid, same-day treatment, and avoids expensive or unavailable diagnostic tests for patients that present with symptoms. This approach results to overtreatment and missed treatment as majority of STIs are asymptomatic. Thus, in addition to syndromic management, screening strategies are essential.

To interrupt transmission of infection and prevent re-infection, treating sexual partners is an important component of STI case management.

Vaccines and other biomedical interventions

Safe and highly effective vaccines are available for 2 STIs: hepatitis B and HPV. These vaccines have represented major advances in STI prevention. The vaccine against hepatitis B is included in infant immunization programmes in 95% of countries and prevents millions of deaths from chronic liver disease and cancer annually.

As of October 2018, the HPV vaccine is available as part of routine immunization programmes in 85 countries, most of them high- and middle-income. HPV vaccination could prevent the deaths of millions of women over the next decade in low- and middle-income countries, where most cases of cervical cancer occur, if high (>80%) vaccination coverage of young women (ages 11-15) can be achieved.

Research to develop vaccines against herpes and HIV is advanced, with several vaccine candidates in early clinical development. Research into vaccines for chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and trichomoniasis is in earlier stages of development.

Other biomedical interventions to prevent some STIs include adult male circumcision and microbicides.

  • Male circumcision reduces the risk of heterosexually acquired HIV infection in men by approximately 60% and provides some protection against other STIs, such as herpes and HPV.
  • Tenofovir gel, when used as a vaginal microbicide, has had mixed results in terms of the ability to prevent HIV acquisition, but has shown some effectiveness against HSV-2.

Current efforts to contain the spread of STIs are not sufficient

Behaviour change is complex

Despite considerable efforts to identify simple interventions that can reduce risky sexual behaviour, behaviour change remains a complex challenge. Research has demonstrated the need to focus on carefully defined populations, consult extensively with the identified target populations, and involve them in design, implementation and evaluation.

Health services for screening and treatment of STIs remain weak

People seeking screening and treatment for STIs face numerous problems. These include limited resources, stigmatization, poor quality of services, and little or no follow-up of sexual partners.

  • In many countries, STI services are provided separately and not available in primary health care, family planning and other routine health services.
  • In many settings, services are often unable to provide screening for asymptomatic infections, lacking trained personnel, laboratory capacity and adequate supplies of appropriate medicines.
  • Marginalized populations with the highest rates of STIs—such as sex workers, men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, prison inmates, mobile populations and adolescents—often do not have access to adequate health services.

WHO response

WHO develops global norms and standards for STI treatment and prevention, strengthens systems for surveillance and monitoring, including those for AMR in gonorrhoea, and leads the setting of the global research agenda on STIs.

Our work is currently guided by the “Global health sector strategy on sexually transmitted infections, 2016 -2021 (8), adopted by the World Health Assembly in 2016 and the 2015 United Nations Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health (9), which highlight the need for a comprehensive, integrated package of essential interventions, including information and services for the prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. The Sixty-ninth World Health Assembly adopted 3 global health sector strategies for the period 2016-2021 on HIV, viral hepatitis and STIs.

  • Global health sector strategy on Sexually Transmitted Infections, 2016-2021
  • Global health sector strategy on HIV, 2016-2021
  • Global health sector strategy on viral hepatitis 2016-2021

WHO works with countries to:

  • Scale-up effective STI services including:
    • STI case management and counseling
    • syphilis testing and treatment, in particular for pregnant women
    • hepatitis B and HPV vaccination
    • STI screening of populations at increased risk of STIs
  • Promote strategies to enhance STI-prevention impact including:
    • integrate STI services into existing health systems
    • promote sexual health
    • measure the burden of STIs
    • monitor and respond to STI antimicrobial resistance.
  • Support the development of new technologies for STI prevention such as:
    • point-of care diagnostic tests for STIs
    • additional drugs for gonorrhoea
    • STI vaccines and other biomedical interventions.

Essential facts, stats and quotes relating to chlamydia

This page contains facts, stats and quotes that LPC members may find useful when writing business cases or developing resources to support the commissioning of a chlamydia screening or treatment service.

This page is ‘work in progress’ and will continue to be updated with new facts, stats and quotes.

Facts, stats and quotes on other topics can be accessed on the Essential facts, stats and quotes page.

Public Health England, Health Protection Report, Vol 9, Number 22 (23rd June 2015)

  • In 2014, over 1.6 million chlamydia tests were carried out in England among young people aged 15 to 24 years.
  • The most commonly diagnosed sexually transmitted infection in 2014 was chlamydia, with 206,774 (47%) diagnoses made.
  • In 2014, almost 138,000 chlamydia diagnoses were made in England among young people aged 15 to 24 years old, the target population for the National Chlamydia Screening Programme (NCSP).
  • In 2014, 29% of Upper Tier Local Authorities (UTLAs) achieved a chlamydia detection rate of at least 2,300 per 100,000 among 15 to 24 year olds, the recommended level for this Public Health Outcome Framework indicator. There was a strong relationship between chlamydia testing coverage and chlamydia detection rates in UTLAs.
  • The NCSP recommends sexually active under-25 year-old men and women should be screened for chlamydia every year, and on change of sexual partner.
  • The NCSP updated their recommendations for case management in August 2013, to include a routine offer of a re-test around three months after treatment completion, in patients already diagnosed with chlamydia.

Public Health England, National Chlamydia Screening Programme, Information to support the commissioning of chlamydia screening in general practice and community pharmacies (October 2014)

  • In 2013, integration of chlamydia screening as measured through the proportion of screens undertaken in core services reached 69.5%. There is scope to further increase this proportion, particularly in primary care including general practice and community pharmacies.

  • In 2013, both the Local Government Association and the NHS Confederation published documents that clearly outlined the increasing role of community pharmacies in delivering public health services, including chlamydia screening. Including chlamydia screening in a pharmacy setting is an important way of ‘making every contact count’.

  • The Chief Medical Officer’s Annual Report 2012 ‘Our children deserve better: prevention pays’ states that ‘Commissioners may maximise value by commissioning appropriate sexually transmitted infection (STI) screening services through opportunistic health contacts such as general practice, sexual health services, abortion services, pharmacies and existing resources’.

  • The NCSP’s Standards 7th edition states that at least 70% of chlamydia screening should take place in core services. Core services consist of primary care (General Practitioner (GP) and community pharmacy), sexual reproductive health (SRH), GUM, and abortion services.

For women, untreated chlamydia can lead to severe reproductive health problems, including infertility (i.e. difficulty or inability to get pregnant). Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a common result of untreated chlamydia infection in women. In PID, the bacteria move from the vagina up through the cervix and into the uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries. Blockage and scarring can damage the tubes, causing women who get pregnant to be more likely to have ectopic (“tubal”) pregnancies. Left untreated, PID can cause infertility and chronic pelvic pain.

Chlamydia can lead to PID in women even when there are no symptoms.

Untreated chlamydia can also cause vaginal discharge, urinary tract infections, and miscarriage. Women who have chlamydia during pregnancy can pass it on to their baby during childbirth, which can cause an eye infection or pneumonia in the newborn.

Men with untreated chlamydia can occasionally develop epididymitis, a painful infection of the testicles. Untreated chlamydia infections can also cause inflammation of the prostate and urethral scarring, sometimes leading to infertility

If you are living with HIV and not taking antiretroviral medications, a chlamydia infection can lead to highly concentrated amounts of HIV virus in your genital tissue causing 8–10 times more HIV to be shed in your semen or vaginal secretions. If you are HIV negative and have chlamydia, your immune cells are especially susceptible to HIV, if your partner is carrying the virus. Rectal chlamydia may increase your chance of getting HIV by 10 to 20 times. However, taking medication to prevent HIV (PrEP) can significantly decrease the risk of getting HIV, even when there is an STD present.

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