Antibiotic therapy for chlamydia


Chlamydia are bacteria that can cause various clinical pictures. They affect the mucous membranes of the urethra and the uterus. If left untreated, they can lead to serious complications, such as inflammation of the testicles or uterus and infertility. In the event of pregnancy, premature birth can even be triggered. Chlamydia can also affect the mucous membranes of the airways and cause pneumonia.

Because of the potential complications, proper antibiotic treatment is a key element.

These antibiotics are used

Chlamydia are obligate bacteria that live intracellularly. This means that they can only survive in one host cell, since they do not have their own metabolism. So they only occur inside other cells. For this reason, not all antibiotics are effective. Antibiotics that can successfully fight chlamydia include:

  • Doxycycline
  • Azithromycin
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Amoxicilin

Find out all about the topic here: Treatment of chlamydial infection.

That's how long I have to take the antibiotics

Chlamydia can cause different diseases depending on the subgroup. The three most important clinical pictures are infections in the eye, in the respiratory tract and in the genital area. The duration of the therapy differs depending on the situation.

If the respiratory tract is sick, the antibiotic must be taken for at least 10 days, usually even longer (approx. 20 days). In the case of an infection in the genital area, the duration is usually shorter. In this case, the antibiotic should be taken for at least 7 days.

This is how long the symptoms last after antibiotic therapy

The duration of antibiotic therapy depends on the point in time at which the diagnosis of chlamydial infection was made. The resolution of the symptoms, in turn, depends on the duration of the antibiotic therapy.

For an infection that was recognized promptly, the symptoms should subside after 7-10 days. In the case of long-term infections, this cannot be said across the board.

That's how long I am contagious after antibiotic therapy

There is no general answer to this question, as the time at which the diagnosis is made is particularly important. Long-term infections are difficult to treat and the bacteria can take longer to be eliminated.

In the case of an infection that was detected promptly, it is advisable not to have sexual intercourse or to use a condom 7-10 days after the therapy.

What to do if the antibiotics don't help

If the antibiotic doesn't help, there can be a number of reasons. It is possible that the chlamydial strain is resistant to the antibiotics that are being taken at this time. To clarify this, you can do a so-called antibiogram. This test then shows which antibiotics are sensitive - i.e. show an effect. Therapy can then be changed.

Another reason can be the duration of the infection. If the infection has been around for a long time and has not been treated, the antibiotic must be taken longer than usual. In this case one should be patient and continue the therapy. If necessary, an antibiogram can be made to remove any doubts.

Are there antibiotics without a prescription?

Antibiotics are not available without a prescription. The reason for this is the increasing antibiotic resistance of various bacterial strains. The resistances arose from incorrect and excessive use of antibiotics. To prevent this, antibiotics are not available in the whole of the EU without a prescription. You always have to see a doctor who will prescribe the right antibiotic after the exam.

The different antibiotics

The doxycycline

Doxycycline is an antibiotic that belongs to the group of tetracyclines. It is a broad spectrum antibiotic and can be used in both gram-positive and gram-negative and cell wallless bacteria. The clinical pictures that can be treated with it include respiratory infections, sinus infections, otitis media and infections in the genital area. The effect is based on an inhibition of protein synthesis. As a result, the bacteria can no longer multiply (so-called bacteriostatic effect) and die.

Possible side effects are irritation of the lining of the mouth and throat. Associated with this, nausea and vomiting can occur. An allergic reaction can also occur. Interactions with other drugs are also possible and should be checked beforehand by the attending physician.

Patients with severe liver damage should not take doxycycline. Pregnant women should also refrain from taking it from the 16th week of pregnancy, otherwise developmental disorders may develop in the unborn child. The same applies to breastfeeding, use is not recommended.

You can find more information on this topic here: The doxycycline.

The ciprofloxacin

Ciprofloxacin is an antibiotic that belongs to the group of gyrase inhibitors (fluoroquinolones). The effect is based on faulty DNA replication, which leads to cell death. Ciprofloxacin thus has a bacteriostatic effect.

Ciprofloxacin is mainly used for gram-negative pathogens, which also include chlamydia. Ciprofloxacin is also used for gastrointestinal infections, pneumonia or infections of the biliary tract or the abdominal cavity.

Known side effects are nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Skin rashes are also common. Care should be taken with its use in patients over 60, as ciprofloxacin can negatively affect the tendon structure. Tendon tears have been observed more frequently after ingestion. Cartilage damage is also possible (so-called chondrotoxicity). Fluoroquinolones should not be used during pregnancy, breastfeeding and in children.

Interactions with other drugs are also possible with ciprofloxacin. The attending physician should first check this before prescribing the antibiotic.

For more information, read on: The Ciprobay

The azithromycin

Azithromycin is an antibiotic that belongs to the group of macrolides. Here, too, the effect is based on an inhibition of protein synthesis, which leads to a halt in growth in bacteria. Azithromycin is used for a respiratory infection, sinus infection, otitis media or tonsillitis. Azithromycin is also effective for infections in the urogenital tract (urinary tract and genital area).

Possible side effects are gastrointestinal complaints such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Serious side effects are cardiovascular disorders. The antibiotic can extend the so-called QT interval and thus trigger life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias. Furthermore, allergic reactions to the substance are possible. The attending physician should also check possible interactions with other medications before taking.

Azithromycin should not be used in patients with renal insufficiency and liver dysfunction. Even if you have allergic reactions to the active ingredient, you should refrain from taking it. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, the antibiotic should only be given if the benefit outweighs the risk. In this case, however, strict investigations should be carried out.

The side effects of antibiotic therapy? Read on here.

The amoxicilin

Amoxicillin belongs to the group of aminopenicillins. The effect is based on an inhibition of the cell wall synthesis (so-called bactericidal effect). It is indicated for infections of the respiratory tract, for gastrointestinal infections (Helicobacter eradication) and for infections of the kidneys, urinary tract and genital tract.

Possible side effects include gastrointestinal complaints such as nausea and diarrhea. Other side effects that are commonly observed are allergic reactions. Those affected suffer from a reddened rash that is accompanied by itching. In rare cases, severe shortness of breath and fever may occur.
Other side effects can affect the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). You may experience anxiety, confusion, and clouding of consciousness. In addition, increased sensitivity to light and noise can be triggered.

As with all other antibiotics, the attending physician should check any interactions with other drugs before taking them. Amoxicillin can be taken during pregnancy, so far there has been no study that has proven negative effects.

Read more about the topic here: The amoxicillin.