Adult Chlamydial Conjunctivitis

This is a chronic form of conjunctivitis, usually unilateral, which will persist if not treated.  The discharge is of a mucus nature and there may be some non-tender swelling in the node in front of the ear.  The lids may be swollen.

The transmission is generally from direct contact with organisms from the genital tract.  This is a genitourinary infection and may be associated with other potentially serious infections.

Chlamydia in women can lead to chronic pelvic inflammatory disease, which may lead to pain and infertility.  Men may develop urethritis or prostatitis.

Testing is by taking a simple swab, which is very accurate in detecting Chlamydia.  Swabs are taken from the affected eye as well as the genitourinary tract of both partners.


If you have the disease it is likely your sexual partner will have it too – for this reason it is a notifiable disease. Contact tracing will be required in order to prevent the cycle of infection.  If just one partner is treated reinfection will occur.

Generally an oral antibiotic such as Azithromicin is given as one or two doses.  
There should be an abstinence from unprotected intercourse until both partners have negative tests.