Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The abbreviated PID stands for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.  It is an infection that invades the organs of the female reproductive system. PID is one of the common and grave complications arisen from a sexually transmitted disease (STD).

It may cause irreparable harm to the ovaries, Fallopian tubes, uterus and other reproductive organs of a female. It is a major escapable cause of infertility among females.

Every year, more than a million females in the US alone suffer the onslaught of PID. This trend of PID onslaught is fast catching up in India too, and increasing the number of infertile females each year.

Besides, the infected females are prone to developing ectopic pregnancies.  The infection rate is increasing in younger females, especially teenagers.

 Causes of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Generally, the prime task of the cervix of the uterus is to put off the bacterial entry through the vagina and other reproductive organs. In case the cervix gets afflicted with a sexually disease like Chlamydia or Gonorrhea, the cervix becomes vulnerable to infections.

Thus, the cervix not only loses its own ability to avert entry of infectious elements into it, but also makes other reproductive organs vulnerable to infectious stuffs.

The PID often happens when the infections make their journey from the cervix to the superior genital region. The 90% of the PIDs are caused by Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, in case they are not timely treated. The other causes are:

  • Pelvic procedures
  • Abortions
  • Birth of a baby

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) symptoms

The PID symptoms are variable and the main symptoms are mentioned below:

  • Stomach tenderness and experiencing dull pain in the lower abdomen
  • Abdominal pain in the superior right region
  • Green or yellow discharge from vagina having a distinct odor
  • Pain while copulating with a partner
  • Pain while urinating
  • Nausea followed by vomiting
  • High fever or chills

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease risk factors

  • The females afflicted with sexually transmitted diseases, such as Chlamydia and Gonorrhea have a higher risk of afflicting PID.
  • The females who experienced a spell of PID are at greater risk of repeating a session again.
  • The girls in their teens, who are extraordinarily sexually active, run a higher risk of developing PID.
  • The women who copulate with multiple partners are at higher risk of developing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and thus, PID.

Certain studies advocate that the females used to vaginal douching are most likely caught the PID. They argue that while douching, the bacterial germs get pushed into the superior genital region and cover the discharge.  That is the alert warning for a female to look for medical help.

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Diagnosis

Before carrying out your pelvic examination, your doctor may seek information about your overall health, besides your involvement in sexual activity. During the pelvic examination, your doctor will know the health condition of your reproductive organs, besides looking for traces of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea infection.

Your doctor may also ascertain the likelihood of irregular cervical discharge and the cervix tenderness, apart from examining your Fallopian tubes and cervix. The cervical discharge may be examined for the presence of infection, including that of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea.

In case your doctor believes the presence of a PID, she or he may ask you to undergo other examinations, like:

  • Ultrasound (sonogram) for viewing your reproductive organs
  • Blood examination for analyzing your blood for the presence of infection

Other examinations, though important, but not common, are:

  • Uterine Lining Biopsy – This is a method wherein a small tissue sample from the endometrium (uterine lining) is eliminated for examination and analysis.
  • Laparoscopy – In this method, a device fitted with light and a camera, is placed is through an abdominal incision for viewing and examining the interior organs of the reproductive system.

PID Treatment

In case the results of examinations and tests point to the presence of PID, your treatment is begun right away.

  • Antibiotics

The first line of treatment for easygoing PID generally is given with antibiotics (one or a combination) that are swallowed by mouth.

The major PID cases are handled with combining the antibiotics that are taken orally and intravenously injected. In case the given treatment is found to be ineffective and you are not able to swallow antibiotics and the infection is increasingly turning severe, you probably require hospitalization.  While in a hospital, the antibiotics are introduced into your vein directly (intravenously).

In case you have been diagnosed having PID, your copulating partner will also require treatment even if he is not showing any kind of symptoms. In case he is also not treated, the infection is likely to recur when you copulate with him again.

  • Surgery

The PID has a tendency of pulling together pus in the swollen tissue.   The antibiotics stop responding to this pus collection (abscess).  A surgery is warranted for removing the abscesses or the abscess afflicted organ.  This surgical intervention will help in averting the breaking of the abscess accumulation and, thus, spreading to other reproductive organs and the abdominal area.

Based on your situation of the infection, the surgery is either performed with the help of a laparoscope (a device fitted with light and camera) or by opening the abdomen for viewing the interior organs.  The latter procedure is called laparotomy.

Both the surgical procedures are major and are generally carried out with the help of a general anesthesia.

In case the abscesses have accumulated on your ovaries and uterus, you may have to undergo oophorectomy and hysterectomy for removal of the two organs.

Issues related to Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

The PDI onslaught recurrently may cause scarring and adhesions in the Fallopian tubes, which may eventually cause chronic pain in the pelvis, ectopic pregnancy and infertility. One out of eight females having PID suffered from infertility issues.

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Prevention

The PID is definitely escapable. The prime cause of catching PID is the untreated STIs or STDs (sexually transmitted diseases). By following the under-mentioned steps you may prevent the onslaught of PID:

  • Always copulate with only one partner.
  • Always use obstructive methods for birth controlling procedures, like diaphragms, condoms and spermicides (any such substance for killing sperm and used as a contraceptive)  during each session of copulation.
  • Avoid using IUDs in case you have been copulating with more than one partner.
  • Seeking a cure promptly if you come to know of any symptom of STIs and PID, including irregular discharge from vagina, bleeding in between your periods or experience pelvic pain.
  • Regular examination and screening of reproductive organs, including presence of infections in your cervix.
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