STDs Expert Forum
Contracting Chlamydia
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The STD Forum is intended only for questions and support pertaining to sexually transmitted diseases other than HIV/AIDS, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital warts, trichomonas, other vaginal infections, nongonoccal urethritis (NGU), cervicitis, molluscum contagiosum, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Contracting Chlamydia

I recently found out I have Chlamydia.  A health department test was positive.  I am married and completely monogomous, is there any way to contract it other than sexually, say a toilet seat?  Also, now I'm wondering If I could have possibly infected my children?  I have a two year old who I often shower with and the kids are always drinking after me.  Is it possible to give it to them through this manner of contact?  I'm wondering because I don't know if I need to sanitize the house, what if they touch on my bath towel or wash clothes, the bed sheets etc.  I'm kind of paranoid now.  Thanks for your help.
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In adults, genital chlamydial infection is exclusively an STD; the only way a person gets it is by sex with another person who is infected.  Your children are not at risk from sharing food utensils, towels, bathrooms, etc, and there is no need to "sanitize the house".  However, you will need to sanitize your husband's genitals--that is, he needs treatment, in addition to you.

It is possible that your husband has not been unfaithful.  Some tests sometimes give false positive results, especially certain older tests.  You should ask the health department clinic what test they did and whether a false result is possible.  Also, chlamydia can be carried for up to 4 years, maybe longer, so if you had sex with other men in the past, it is possible you have been carrying the infection for a long time.  But most likely your husband has had other partners, if you have not.  No matter what, he needs treatment so you don't get infected again.

Good luck--  HHH, MD
3 Comments
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I had contracted chlamydia about two years ago now, and I'm still a bit confused on how it happened.  When I found out I had chlamydia, I was with an ex-boyfriend, and we had been dating about 5 months at that point.  I did not cheat on my ex-boyfriend, and the person I was with about a week before I started dating him had tested negative for the disease.  The last girl that he claimed to be with  was eight months before we started dating.  He did say that he wore a condom while having sexual intercourse with her, but did admit to performing oral sex on her without a condom.  Is it possible that he contracted chlamydia from her by doing so?  And, if so, is it possible that it took him so long to notice any symptoms?  Like I said, we had been dating 5 months, then I experience vaginal bleeding during sex which led me to my doctor, and that's how I found out I had contracted it.  I don't think he would have cheated on me, but anything is possible.  So, to summerize, I would like to know if a) you can contract chlamydia through unprotected oral sex, and b)does it sometimes take 8+ months before you show any symptoms, if you do in fact show any at all. Thank you.
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Could chlamydia be caught by a bath?  What if the person who was infected was bubble bathing with you?
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This Forum's Experts
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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Edward W Hook, MDBlank
University of Alabama at Birmingham
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