STDs Expert Forum
ureaplasma and reactive arthritis
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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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ureaplasma and reactive arthritis

Hello dear doctor
I am male, heterosexual and from East Europe.
2 weegs ago I did a stupid mistake and met a girl on the internet and had unprotected vaginal sex with her.
This girl claimed she has no multiple sex parteners. The next day I convinced her to test for HIV, syphilis and hep B  and her tests came out negative.
4 days after the exposure I did  from my urine DNA test for chlamydia and gonorhea which came out negative(undetectable)
Now at 2 weeks after the exposure I have pain in my knees and ankles and I am very worried this could be reactive arthritis.A friend of mine had reactive arthritis in the past caused by chlamydia and that's why I am so worried.I read on the internet that besides chlamydia /gonorhea and enteral infections( which I excluded since I do not have diarhea (diarrhea) and my tests for chlamydia/gonorhea came back negative) ureaplasma urealyticum can also be a trigger factor for RA so today I did a test for ureaplasma from my sperm. On monday I will have the result. I don't have any symptoms of urethritis only this pain in my ankle and knees.
Now the questions :
1. Is the chlamydia/gonorhea DNA test from urine conclusive at 4 days after exposure?
2. What are the chances for me to develop reactive arthritis from ureaplasma?
3. Have you ever seen a case of reactive arthritis caused by ureaplasma?Should I worry?
4. If ureaplasma comes back positive should I start treatment for it?And if so which treatment?
Thanks in advance and sorry for my bad english.
A verry worried guy.
239123_tn?1267651214
WElcome back to the forum.

Responding first to the title of your question:  I am unaware of any data that ureaplasma triggers reactive arthritis.  It is possible that urethritis of any cause can do it, but chlamydia is the only proven trigger.

RA rarely causes merely "pain in the knees and ankles" as the only symptom; there would also be visible swelling and tenderness, and usually other symptoms.  Also, 2 weeks after a triggering infection probably is too soon; it's usually 4-6 weeks.

To your specific questions:

1) Yes, the DNA tests for chlamydia are fully sensitive any time more than 2-3 days after exposure.

2,3) There is no realistic chance you have RA this soon, and Ureaplasma isn't known to trigger it.  I have never seen or heard of such a case.

4)  Ureaplasma is a normal bacteria in the urinary tract. There's a 50% chance your test will be positive, but if so it has nothing to do with your recent sexual exposure.  You should not be treated even if that test is positive.

If your leg pain continues, see a doctor.  But I recommend you put reactive arthritis out of your mind.  My guess is that your symptoms are just the physical manifestations of anxiety from worrying about a sexual decision you regret.

Regards--  HHH, MD
2 Comments
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thanks you so much doctor and keep up the good work..
now I am releaved
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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