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 July 23, 2003
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Chlamydia Rates Higher than Thought
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EDINBURGH, Scotland (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- A new study finds one in 10 men could have the sexually transmitted disease chlamydia. Researchers say their study published in The Lancet shows this number is much higher than previously thought.

Chlamydia infection can cause pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility in women. The infection rarely causes serious problems in men. Previous studies have reported half of the people infected with chlamydia are not aware they have the disease. Researchers from Edinburgh Royal Infirmary conducted a study to test a group of young men for chlamydia.

Past studies have shown about 2 percent of men have chlamydia. However, there is a concern that there was a selection bias when it came to the men who participated in the past research. The current study included around 800 army recruits who were undergoing basic training. Most of the men were under age 25. All of the men agreed to have their urine tested for chlamydia as part of their routine medical examination.

Researchers report 78 of the men, or 10 percent, tested positive for chlamydia. Ninety percent of the infected men had no symptoms for the disease, which is 50 percent higher than previously reported. Researchers also say the infected men were no more sexually active than the average young male with one sexual partner over the previous six months.

The study concludes the number of men who have chlamydia and may not know it could be substantially higher than previously reported. Furthermore, a higher number of infected men without symptoms shows the importance of involving both men and women in screening for this disease, according to the researchers.

This article was reported by Ivanhoe.com, who offers Medical Alerts by e-mail every day of the week. To subscribe, go to: http://www.ivanhoe.com/newsalert/.

SOURCE: The Lancet, 2003;361:1792

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