Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) Doctor in Austin, TX
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease OBGYN in Austin, TX
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Q & A
What is pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)?
PID is an infection in your reproductive system, including the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries.
PID can damage these organs, making it harder to conceive in the future. It can also cause a tubo-ovarian abscess (TOA), an infected area in the pelvis that could make you very sick.
Over a million women across the United States get PID each year, and more than 100,000 become infertile because of PID. Many ectopic pregnancies (where an embryo starts growing outside the womb) also result from PID.
What causes PID?
Most people get PID from having unprotected sex, but around 10% of infections aren’t sexually transmitted.
Usually, if bacteria enter your vagina, your cervix prevents them from going farther. However, if you have a sexually transmitted disease (STD) like gonorrhea or chlamydia, it affects your cervix and reduces its ability to keep bacteria out.
Around 90% of PID infections are due to untreated gonorrhea and chlamydia. The infection can also enter your uterus during an abortion or childbirth and pelvic procedures like inserting an intrauterine device (IUD) for birth control. STD testing before IUD placement helps reduce the risk.
What symptoms does PID cause?
PID symptoms can start quickly. You might have pain or tenderness in your pelvic area and an abnormal vaginal discharge that’s typically yellow or green and has an odd smell.
Other PID symptoms include:
- Chills or fever
- Nausea and vomiting
- Pain during sex
- Burning sensation when urinating
- Irregular periods
- Spotting or cramping between periods
Some people don’t know they have PID because their symptoms are mild or unnoticeable.
How is PID diagnosed and treated?
If you develop symptoms of PID, visit Women’s Health Domain right away. Your OB/GYN will go over your medical history and ask about your symptoms, sexual activity, and general health.
They perform a pelvic exam to look for signs of infection and may take a swab from your vagina for lab testing. A urine test helps to rule out a urinary tract infection (UTI), which causes similar symptoms to PID. Some patients might need an ultrasound scan.
The quicker you receive a diagnosis and treatment, the more likely you are to make a successful recovery and avoid infertility. You should also tell any sexual partners if you have PID, as they’ll need treatment to prevent the infection from spreading.
Treating PID involves taking oral antibiotics. Even if your symptoms go away after a few days, you must complete the course to ensure the infection doesn’t come back.
For expert diagnosis and treatment of PID, call Women’s Health Domain today or book an appointment online.