If a woman is infected with cervical chlamydia while giving birth, there is a 60 percent chance of the newborn being infected with neonatal chlamydia. This can lead to neonatal pneumonia and neonatal conjunctivitis, both of which are serious complications. Therefore, it’s important to be aware that chlamydia and pregnancy can be a dangerous combination.
For chlamydia patients who are pregnant or are lactating mothers, the usual antibiotic prescribed by doctors is erythromycin, with a dosage of 500 mg four times a day for one week. The reason for this is that the usual chlamydia-fighting antibiotic tetracycline can cause fetal abnormality. If erythromycin is found intolerable for the mother, the physician will most likely prescribe the antibiotic amoxicillin instead, for a period of seven days. Azithromycin is a chlamydia treatment that is safe for pregnant women to take, and is only given in one dose – making it much more convenient for patients than other drugs.
There is a small risk that taking antibiotics as part of chlamydia treatment may cause some unpleasant side effects in pregnant women, such as diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. Erythromycin is said to cause the most side effects, while azithromycin generally causes the least.
If an infected pregnant woman has a history of being allergic to penicillin, the doctor cannot prescribe her with amoxicillin, as it belongs to the group of penicillin. It is best to consult first with a physician if a woman suspects that she is allergic to penicillin before undergoing treatment during pregnancy.
What Happens to the Baby
If a pregnant woman has chlamydia, there is a greater chance that she will pass the infection on to her newborn child. This is why doctors recommend that pregnant patients with chlamydia get treated as soon as possible, before their due date. The medication and antibiotics prescribed for chlamydia have been proven safe for the baby while still in the womb; however, it is always best to consult with your physician to determine which antibiotic would be the most suitable for you to take.
Further Means of Treatment
Apart from the antibiotic tablets that will be prescribed to the pregnant patient, they will also be instructed by their administering physician to have the womans regular sexual partner/s tested and treated for chlamydia. This is done to prevent re-infection from occurring. Also, the doctor will give the patient and her partner strict orders to abstain from sexual contact until the both of them have completed their given course in antibiotics.
It’s important to know that this isn’t just a one-time thing – both the patient and her partner need to be committed to not having sex until they’ve both completed their courses of antibiotics. If they don’t, there’s a very real risk of re-infection. So, please make sure you follow your doctor’s orders carefully!
To be clear of any chlamydia infection, it is important that an expectant mother follows all the guidelines provided by her doctor.