Beyond “safe sex”—can we fight adolescent pelvic inflammatory disease?
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- Abu Raya, B., Bamberger, E., Kerem, N.C. et al. Eur J Pediatr (2013) 172: 581. doi:10.1007/s00431-012-1786-5
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Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a common disorder affecting sexually active adolescents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and European CDC report Chlamydia trachomatis as the most common sexually transmitted infection and one of the main etiological agents causing PID. C. trachomatis' and PID's high prevalence may be attributed to multiple factors including high-risk sexual behaviors, sensitive laboratory diagnostics (polymerase chain reaction), and the introduction of chlamydia screening programs. The pathogenesis of C. trachomatis infection is complex with recent data highlighting the role of toll-like receptor 2 and four in the mediation of the inflammatory cascade. The authors review the etiology of the disease, explore its pathogenesis, and discuss a variety of strategies that may be implemented to reduce the prevalence of C. trachomatis including: (a) behavioral risk reduction, (b) effective screening of asymptomatic females, (c) targeted male screening, (d) implementation of a sensitive, rapid, self-administered point-of-care testing, and (e) development of an effective vaccine.