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Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Also called: PID

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is an infection and inflammation of the uterus, ovaries, and other female reproductive organs. It causes scarring in these organs. This can lead to infertility, ectopic pregnancy, pelvic pain, abscesses, and other serious problems. PID is the most common preventable cause of infertility in the United States.

Gonorrhea and chlamydia, two sexually transmitted diseases, are the most common causes of PID. Other bacteria can also cause it. You are at greater risk if you

  • Are sexually active and younger than 25
  • Have more than one sex partner
  • Douche

Some women have no symptoms. Others have pain in the lower abdomen, fever, smelly vaginal discharge, irregular bleeding, and pain during intercourse or urination. Doctors diagnose PID with a physical exam, lab tests, and imaging tests. Antibiotics can cure PID. Early treatment is important. Waiting too long increases the risk of infertility.

NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Symptoms of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following features are indicative of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • pain in your lower abdomen and pelvis
  • heavy vaginal discharge with an unpleasant odor
  • pain or bleeding during intercourse
  • abnormal uterine bleeding
  • fever
  • painful or difficult urination
It is possible that Pelvic Inflammatory Disease shows no physical symptoms and still is present in a patient.

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Common Causes of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following are the most common causes of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • bacterial infections
  • chlamydia infections
  • gonorrhea infections
  • sexually transmissible bacterial infections

Risk Factors for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • multiple sexual partners
  • having sex without a condom
  • douching regularly
  • having a history of pelvic inflammatory disease
  • being in a sexual relationship with a person who has more than one sex partner
  • being a sexually active women younger than 25 years old

Prevention of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Yes, it may be possible to prevent Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. Prevention may be possible by doing the following:
  • avoid douching
  • avoid vaginal, oral, or anal sex
  • use condoms
  • do sex with just one partner
  • limiting the number of sex partners
  • do not abuse alcohol or drugs

Occurrence of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Common between 1 - 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease most commonly occurs in the following age group:
  • Aged between 15-60 years

Common Gender

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease most commonly occurs in the following gender:
  • Female

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • Pelvic exam: To diagnose the signs and symptoms of pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Blood and urine tests: To measure the white blood cell count
  • Ultrasound: To view the images of your reproductive organs
  • Laparoscopy: To view your pelvic organs

Doctor for Diagnosis of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • Gynecologist

Complications of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease if untreated

Yes, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Pelvic Inflammatory Disease is left untreated:
  • infertility
  • ectopic pregnancy
  • chronic pelvic pain
  • cancer

Procedures for Treatment of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following procedures are used to treat Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • Surgery: To treat chronic pelvic pain and scarring

Self-care for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following self-care actions or lifestyle changes may help in the treatment or management of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:
  • Use of latex condoms: Lowers the risk of pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Screening of women at risk for infection: Reduces the risk of pelvic inflammatory disease

Patient Support for Treatment of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The following actions may help Pelvic Inflammatory Disease patients:
  • Appointment with your doctor: Helps in evaluating the infertility

Time for Treatment of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

While time-period of treatment for each patient may vary, below is the typical time-period for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease to resolve if treated properly under an expert supervision:
  • In 1 - 4 weeks

Is Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Infectious?

Yes, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease is known to be infectious. It can spread across people via the following means:
  • sexual contact

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases

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