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PID & sterility

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i had unprotected sex about a month ago. After my period i started having lower abdominal and i'm still having it. My job is a very demanding one and i haven't been able to see a doctor. I am scared i have PID and am wondering how long can it be left for until it starts to do permanent damage? I have an appointment with my GP on 27th March. Is this leaving it too late?

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replied April 12th, 2007
Sexual Health - Women Answer A2553
PID stands for "pelvic inflammatory disease". PID is a general term that includes infections of the cervical canal (endocervicitis), uterine mucosa-endometrium (endometritis), tubes (salpingitis), the tissue that surrounds the uterus-parametrium (parametritis), the ovaries (oophoritis) and the pelvic peritoneum (pelveoperitonitis). PID is used as a term because genital infections are rarely located on only one of these locations but usually affect all of them at the same time or will affect all of them in a short period of time. PID’s major attributes follow:
1. PID is the most common disorder in gynecology;
2. PID is a chronic-reoccurring condition, and
3. IF not treated in time, PID can create very bad consequences such as permanent sterility.
PID mostly affects the women between 15 and 40 years old, especially adolescents. Increased sexual activity, promiscuity and not using condoms are risk factors for getting PID.
PID can be caused by 2 types of infections: exogenous and endogenous.
Exogenous infection is caused by microbes that normally are not found in the vagina but are imported via unprotected sex (sexually transmitted). Chlamydia and gonorrhea are the most common types of exogenous PID.
Endogenous types of PID are caused by microbes that are normally found in the vagina but whose activity is normally under the control of local immune mechanisms in the vagina. In some occasions (delivery, abortions, injuries…) those microbes can escape the control and cause infection.
Symptoms of the PID depend upon the infective agent and part of the genital system that is affected. Usual symptoms are: vaginal discharge, spotting, prolonged periods, low abdominal pain, painful sex, fever etc. Sterility is a late symptom due to the permanent damage of the tubes and endometrium. Some types of microbes (Chlamydia) don’t show any symptoms or very poor symptoms but the final consequences are the same-sterility.
Prognosis and treatment of PID depends upon the infective agent, early-late diagnosis and proper treatment.

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