Chlamydia is one of the most frequently reported sexually transmitted diseases. It is caused by a bacteria named Chlamydia trachomatis. Though Chlamydia can occur in men and women of any age group, it is seen more frequently in young women. Some studies state that 1 in every 20 sexually active women have chlamydia. The most common age was around 14-26. More often than not, this infection is seen commonly in the genital area. However, there is a probability to get a chlamydia infection in the eye. This chlamydia eye infection or chlamydia eye discharge is popularly referred to as chlamydial conjunctivitis and inclusion.
When chlamydia occurs in the eye, the person can get conjunctivitis or pink eye.
Chlamydial conjunctivitis is curable via topical and oral antibiotics. If the disease goes undiagnosed or untreated, it can further lead to several complications and even lead to permanent blindness. Mothers who have chlamydial conjunctivitis may pass it to their infants while giving birth through the birth canal; these infants are also prone to several lung infections.
Symptoms of Eye Chlamydia
Though chlamydia does not generally provoke changes in vision or any kind of notable pain in the affected eye. If you encounter any of these below-mentioned symptoms in addition to other major symptoms, you could be encountering another kind of infection. However, the most promising way to determine if you have chlamydia eye discharge or any other eye infection is to visit your eye doctor for an immediate examination.
Here is the list of symptoms of chlamydial conjunctivitis that usually ripen gradually. A person can experience chlamydia eye discharge in one or both eyes, but as it may, it commonly transpires only in one eye.
Some of the major symptoms of a chlamydial eye infection are:
- Redness in the eye
- Swelling in the eye
- Itchiness in the eye
- Pus or unusual discharge from the eye
- Tears and watery or white eye discharge
- Crusting or sticking together of eyelids
- Extreme light sensitivity
Most Common Causes of Chlamydial Conjunctivitis
Chlamydial conjunctivitis is most often than not transmitted through unprotected and unsafe sexual activities. As mentioned earlier, this infection is common in genital areas. However, when a person’s eye comes into immediate contact with urine or genital fluids of an already infected person then the infection forms in the eye.
The chlamydia bacteria can be flared to the eye in several other ways, including:
- Sharing clothes, towels, or linens with an infected person
- Touching or stroking your eye immediately after having sexual contact with an infected person
- Sharing cosmetics and skincare such as mascara, soaps, etc with an infected individual
- Infants can get during birth from the birthing canal if the mother is infected.
Diagnosis of Chlamydial Conjunctivitis
Chlamydial conjunctivitis can be diagnosed through an eye test. Your ophthalmologist will most likely take a swab of your conjunctiva eye discharge and send it to the laboratory to get it tested in a laboratory for explicit bacteria.
Besides, your eye doctor may also recommend that you get tested for other sexually transmitted infections or diseases, including sexually transmitted diseases such as; syphilis, gonorrhea, or even both. Both of these diseases can generate infections that can flare to the eyes.
Treatment of Chlamydial Conjunctivitis
Chlamydial conjunctivitis can either be treated orally or through topical antibiotics or sometimes even both like eye drops or ointment. In most cases eye chlamydia cases clear up in the span of a few weeks, however for the condition to cure thoroughly, it is necessary to take the antibiotics with a precise dosage as directed.
If you are experiencing chlamydia eye discharge or chlamydial conjunctivitis, your sexual partner or partners should also be treated to prevent any further spread of this infection.
If the chlamydia is left untreated it can further lead to several eye complications. This condition can also recur in those who have a previous history of this disease.
Chlamydial Eye Conjunctivitis in Newborns
A pregnant woman who is already infected with chlamydia can infect her newborn baby when he or she passes through the birth canal during the delivery process. There is a chance that up to 50 percent of infants can contract chlamydia from their infected mother during the delivery process.
The symptoms of chlamydial conjunctivitis in infants may enclose bumps, redness, and watery discharge. Babies generally start encountering these symptoms about 5 to 7 days after birth.
Chlamydial conjunctivitis in babies is cured through IV antibiotics, along with antibiotic ointment. If this disease is left untreated in infants, it can lead to further intricacies, like blindness and lung infections.
Difference Between Chlamydial Conjunctivitis and Trachoma
Trachoma is an excruciating eye infection induced by a bacteria known as Chlamydia trachomatis. It is the very same bacteria that generates chlamydial conjunctivitis. Though it is additionally recognized in developing countries, trachoma is one of the leading causes of infectious blindness all around the world.
Trachoma contaminates the inner eyelid of a person, rendering it scarred. The scarred and infected eyelid turns inward. Due to this, the eyelashes start to brush against the cornea of the eye and then destroy corneal tissue. This contention nearly causes irreversible blindness.
Prevention of Chlamydial Conjunctivitis
Preventing chlamydial conjunctivitis is pretty simple. This disease is typically not excruciating, it is treatable in adults and even in infants while diagnosed when caught early. Nevertheless, untreated chlamydial conjunctivitis can lead to pretty serious eye issues, including blindness.
Protected sex and maintaining appropriate hygiene are essential in containing chlamydial conjunctivitis. Pregnant women who have chlamydia should obtain medicine before giving birth to stop spreading the infection to their newborn babies.
In broad, it is essential to rehearse reasonable hygiene to control and even prevent these infections.