Recurrent genitourinary chlamydial infections in sexually active female adolescents

J Pediatr. 1992 Sep;121(3):487-93. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3476(05)81812-8.


To determine the recurrence rate of chlamydial infections, we initially screened an urban population of 1308 sexually active female adolescents for chlamydial infection at the urethral and endocervical sites; these young women were followed and had additional examinations for infection. Chlamydial infection was documented by tissue culture in 31.1% (407) of them at some time during the study. After appropriate antibiotic treatment, 68.3% (278/407) returned for test-of-cure cultures within 3 months of their initial infection; of those 278, a total of 254 had sterile cultures. These patients were followed to determine the recurrence rate of chlamydial infections. Of these 254 patients, 177 (69.7%) had one or more follow-up visits; 38.4% (68/177) had a recurrent chlamydial infection. The majority of recurrent infections were documented within 9 months of the initial infection. Recurrent infections with the same serovar were frequent, suggesting reinfection by untreated partners or possible relapse of the initial chlamydial infection. This high rate of recurrent infection suggests that female adolescents should be rescreened frequently for genitourinary chlamydial infections.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cervix Uteri / microbiology
  • Child
  • Chlamydia Infections / epidemiology*
  • Chlamydia Infections / microbiology
  • Chlamydia trachomatis* / classification
  • Chlamydia trachomatis* / isolation & purification
  • Female
  • Genital Diseases, Female / epidemiology*
  • Genital Diseases, Female / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recurrence
  • Serotyping
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexual Partners
  • Urethra / microbiology