Understanding Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)

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Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is a very common condition that affects the female reproductive organs. Around two hundred thousand women per year will get diagnosed with PID. For the most part, this condition is treatable and it is not as serious as some women might fear. However, it is still important to get it addressed. PID is characterized by an infection of the female reproductive system. All infections can potentially spread and get much worse, which is why it is so important to get them treated in time.

Symptoms

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Some of the symptoms associated with PID are so minor that people will often struggle when it comes to even identifying the condition in time. This is one of the reasons why a lot of women will wait to get treatment. It might just be because they are not sure that they have the condition, which makes sense for a condition that has a tendency to create side effects that are easily disguised as normal.
Lower abdominal and pelvic pain is a common symptom. Burning during urination is also very common. Strange uterine bleeding that occurs between menstrual cycles may also present itself, especially during sexual intercourse or masturbation. Some women will experience vaginal discharge that has an unusual or very pungent odor. As the disease progresses, it might be more common to get a fever and the associated chills that come with a fever.
These are just the preliminary symptoms of PID, however. Some women might not even see their doctors at this point. If they have progressed to nausea and vomiting and very severe pelvic and vaginal pain, it might be time to see a doctor right away. When the vaginal discharge becomes really foul and terribly unpleasant to the point where there is no mistaking it, it also might be just as important to seek the services of a gynecologist, or at least a general practitioner who can refer women to gynecologists. Having a minor fever might not be as severe, but if the fever has reached one hundred degrees or so, it really is time to get a prescription for antibiotics in order to control the infection.

Risk Factors

For the most part, the people who get PID got it through sexual intercourse. In that way, many of the risk factors are the risk factors that people would expect with all sexually transmitted infections and diseases. Having unprotected sex and sex without a condom is one of the main risk factors. Having multiple sexual partners is similarly a major risk. Women who are sexually active and below the age of twenty-five also might have more problems with this, given the nature of their vaginal tissue.
However, there are also reasons why a particular women might be especially susceptible to PID. For instance, women who douche all the time are going to disrupt the balance of bacteria in their vaginas and around them, and this can raise their risk of a wide range of different bacterial infections. It’s more difficult to even detect and distinguish one infection from the other in that instance, since urinary tract infections have many of the same symptoms associated with PID. Women who douche on a regular basis will be more likely to get a wide range of different bacterial infections, and it is important to understand the risk of this.
Women who have weakened immune systems will be more likely to get PID as well. Women might be exposed to the bacteria at different points, but their immune systems might be able to fight it off if they’re healthy enough. This might be more of a problem in the case of women with weakened immune systems. They might also get the more severe symptoms of PID much sooner.

Treatment

For the most part, PID is a perfectly treatable condition. Women will need to be prescribed the right antibiotics, obviously. However, this will only be the first step for them. From there, they should be able to take the steps to get everything back in order. People in this situation should tell their partner or sexual partners about having contracted the infection, since their partners are going to need to get tested as well.
It is possible that temporary abstinence from sexual activity might be necessary until the infection has been cleared entirely. It’s a good idea for women to thoroughly wash their clothes or anything else that came in contact with their vulvas during the recovery period as well, just to be on the safe side.
PID is typically capable of being treated on an outpatient basis. Most women will just need antibiotics, and so will their partners. There are complications that can result with untreated PID, and it is important for women to make sure that the infections have not progressed. Some of the complications can involve long-term health and lifestyle consequences like infertility. However, this is still comparatively rare for most PID patients. This is typically a fairly simple infection to treat, and most women will get their lives back in order quickly after getting and treating PID.

Sexually Transmitted Infections and Shame

It’s important to reduce the sense of shame that some people might have regarding PID, which is classified as a sexually transmitted disease. It is technically possible to get an infection like this without regular sexual activity, so women who are not sexually active should not automatically make the assumption that they are immune to PID. However, for the most part, this is one of the more benign sexually transmitted diseases out there.
Some people are automatically terrified of all sexually transmitted diseases due to the amount of press that the most dangerous diseases will get. PID is a treatable condition if it is caught in time. People should be able to ward off the worst effects fairly early. Getting the necessary treatment at the right time is usually all that it takes, and it is important for people to remember that there is nothing immoral or shameful about getting a disease like this.

This article is for educative purposes only and not to be substituted for professional medical advice.