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Doctor insights on: False Negative Chlamydia Tests

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Chlamydia (Definition)

Chlamydia is a curable sexually transmitted infection that is caused by the bacteria chlamydia trachomatis. This bacteria infects mucous membranes of the urethra, vagina, cervix, anus, rectum, eyelid, and throat. Chlamydia may be asymptomatic but some patients experience pain or burning during urination, nausea, fever, vaginal discharge, ...Read more


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I had a positive result for chlamydia. I had a negative test 3 months prior and Iv been with the same person. Why did their test come back negative? What are all the factors to a false negative test for chlamydia?

I had a positive result for chlamydia. I had a negative test 3 months prior and Iv been with the same person. Why did their test come back negative? What are all the factors to a false negative test for chlamydia?

Chlamydia in partner: This happens a lot. Your partner was infected but his immune system cleared it before testing. Or he took an antibiotic (maybe for something else) and it cured him before testing. You had it from distant past partner and current partner was lucky and didn't catch it. The tests miss some infections. Or he isn't being truthful about other partners. Most important: you both need treatment. ...Read more

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If I take azithromycin 3 days before getting a pap test will that make chlamydia come up as a false negative due to the antibiotic in my system?

If I take azithromycin 3 days before getting a pap test will that make chlamydia come up as a false negative due to the antibiotic in my system?

Yes, possibly: Chlamydia tests usually remain positive for several days after treatment, but it might turn negative as soon as 3 days. Unless the azithromycin treatment is urgent, best to delay treatment until the chlamydia test is done. Or speak with the doctor or clinic about self collecting your chlamydia test now (vaginal swab or urine). The specimen will still be good if kept in a refrigerator for 3 days. ...Read more

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What causes a chlamydia test to be a false negative?

What causes a chlamydia test to be a false negative?

It's just random: Tests miss 5-10% of infections, more by urine, less by urethral or vaginal swab. Maybe other possibilities as well. Chlamydia clears on its own in a few weeks to months, so current testing is negative. Or s/he received an antibiotic for chlamydia (and didn't admit it) or for another infection, curing chlamydia or interfering with the test. Partner (s) of infected person need Rx, even w/ neg tests. ...Read more

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How rare can u get a false negative result in chlamydia I tested negative but before I took the test I peed and only a little came out is it accurate?

How rare can u get a false negative result in chlamydia I tested negative but before I took the test I peed and only a little came out is it accurate?

Depends upon test: There are different types of tests for chlamydia and some are more reliable than others. If you are concerned just get retested to be sure. ...Read more

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Ispossible to false negative test chlamydia after treatment? Tested positive, received treatment but retest 2 wks after b/c I felt I still had symptom

Ispossible to false negative test chlamydia after treatment? Tested positive, received treatment but retest 2 wks after b/c I felt I still had symptom

May be healing: The burning and some drip can persist for a few weeks after the microbes are gone. The testing also probably isn't altogether reliable. Yet another possibility is eating spicy stuff, especially those little peppers -- these can mimic chlamydial urethritis ...Read more

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Would a urine PCR test is sufficient for detection of chlamydia trachomatis for women or have a chance for false negative result?

Would a urine PCR test is sufficient for detection of chlamydia trachomatis for women or have a chance for false negative result?

Chlamydia: I know of no good provider who would use urine testing for chlamydia in women. Chlamydia infects the cervix and other vaginal tissue. It is not found normally in the bladder or urethra in women.

So, a urine test in women is the incorrect test. ...Read more

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I tested positive for chlamydia, but my boyfriend tested negative in two different tests. Did I have a false positive?

I tested positive for chlamydia, but my boyfriend tested negative in two different tests. Did I have a false positive?

Not necessarily: It's common to find chlamydia in only one person in a couple. False pos tests are rare; probably your test is accurate but bf's tests maybe false neg. Or you had it first and he was not yet infected. Or he had chlamydia that cleared before he was tested. Or he could have been treated but not told you; or maybe had an antibiotic for something else that cured his chlamydia. You both must be treated. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a chlamydia direct and amplified probe? Is it possible to get a false negative with a direct probe?

What is the difference between a chlamydia direct and amplified probe? Is it possible to get a false negative with a direct probe?

NAAT vs DNA probe: I'm not familiar with the term "direct"; maybe you mean nucleic acid amplifciation tests (NAATs). There is also a DNA probe test. NAATs are generally better, but more expensive. Both can miss some infections, but the probe test misses more (i.e. false negative results). Still, either one picks up more than 90% of infections. A negative result usually is accurate. ...Read more

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My fiance's test results came back neg. For chlamydia. I've only been with him for 3 years, How possible is it that my test is a false-positive?

My fiance's test results came back neg. For chlamydia. I've only been with him for 3 years, How possible is it that my test is a false-positive?

Unlikely: The actual frequency of false positives and false negatives varies with the type of test, but in general, false negative Chlamydia test results are more common than false positives. I would believe your "positive" and treat it. If you two are sexually active, I would treat him, too, since his test may be false negative. ...Read more

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I had a chlamydia test done a year ago via swab, this was a month after alleged encounter. Tested neg. How sure can I be it wasn't a false neg?

I had a chlamydia test done a year ago via swab, this was a month after alleged encounter. Tested neg. How sure can I be it wasn't a false neg?

Here are some...: If both partners are tested, treated, and followed without recurring symptoms & further encounter out of one-to-one relationship, it is reasonable to clinically declare your are okay. This is life reality although many STD-affected with chlamydia & gonorrhea are free of symptoms. However, it is also reasonable to be retested annually if you are in high-risk category like one with multiple partners ...Read more

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1 positive chlamydia test, then 2nd and 3rd were negative w/ swabs and urine to be sure as it didn't seem right. Advice on how false positives happen?

1 positive chlamydia test, then 2nd and 3rd were negative w/ swabs and urine to be sure as it didn't seem right. Advice on how false positives happen?

Type of test done: The most accurate and most common chlamydia tests use nucleic acid amplification and almost never are falsely positive. There is also a "DNA probe" test, less costly and still done by some labs, which sometimes give false pos results. However, even here the large majority of positves are true. If two partners have neg and pos results, usually the negative is false. Both partners need treatment. ...Read more

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No false results NAAT. 4 neg tests/retests for chlamydia before/during pregnancy. Now 2 positive after birth no sex of any kind at all between how?

No false results NAAT. 4 neg tests/retests for chlamydia before/during pregnancy. Now 2 positive after birth no sex of any kind at all between how?

A few possibilities: It is hard when people have one positive and one negative result on a test. Possible interpretations are: 1. The neg tests were false and the + test is correct 2. The neg tests were true and the + test is incorrect 3. Both are correct and you acquired it between tests. You and your doctor who know you can determine that best course of action. Consider testing your partner. ...Read more

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Can there be a possible false negative result for chlamydia and gonorrhea endocervical swabs?

Can there be a possible false negative result for chlamydia and gonorrhea endocervical swabs?

Possible: There can be false-negative findings and the easiest way to prove this is to get retested. If you have been having unprotected sex and are symptomatic would also want to be tested for other stds, including hiv. Good luck. ...Read more

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Can I have a false pos. STI test from vaginal swab? Tested pos. For chlamydia; treated immediately. Next day, me & my partner's urine tests both neg.

Can I have a false pos. STI test from vaginal swab? Tested pos. For chlamydia; treated immediately. Next day, me & my partner's urine tests both neg.

Need test of cure: It is possible that you had a false positive, however, a swab test is much more sensitive than a urine test. Regardless, you and your partner need treatment and a test of cure to make sure the infection cleared. ...Read more

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Good evening doctor. My partner of 4 years and I recently went to get tested for stds and he came up positive for chlamydia. I came out negative. He swears it's only been me for 4 years. Is there a possibility that the test could've been a false positive?

Good evening doctor. My partner of 4 years and I recently went to get tested for stds and he came up positive for chlamydia. I came out negative. He swears it's only been me for 4 years. Is there a possibility that the test could've been a false positive?

False Positive: No test is 100%. There will be false positives and false negatives. You can always get another test. That being said, if you both have been monogamous for the past 4 years why the tests? Just food for thought. Additionally, if you have had antibiotics recently it could gave cured any infection you had. Remember men usually have no symptoms. ...Read more

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Is there such a thing as a false positive chlamydia test?

Is there such a thing as a false positive chlamydia test?

Yes: All tests have both false positives (meaning you don't really have it) and false negatives (meaning you really do have it). Chlamydia testing is very accurate but yes a false test is possible. You can always requests a retest and the test can be done through a different lab for confirmation. ...Read more

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My test was positive for chlamydia, but my bfs was negative. How can that be?

My test was positive for chlamydia, but my bfs was negative. How can that be?

Here are some. ..: Let's review a few fact of life: Many chlamydia-infected men and women have no symptoms for years; being exposed to chlamydia doesn't mean always contracting chlamydia infection and contracting chlamydia doesn't mean always manifesting symptoms of chlamydia infection. So, testing men/women with high index of infection such as multiple sex partners is a good idea and for Rx, treat both at the same ...Read more

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Is a chlamydia test 100% accurate? How would you know if you have a false positive?

Is a chlamydia test 100% accurate? How would you know if you have a false positive?

90 - 95% accurate: However false positives do occur so that you can be retested & 2nd positive test would be definitive. You are free & clear if repeat is negative & 2 weeks have passed since encounter where you might have acquired it. ...Read more

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Can chlamydia be dorm for yrs and test negative? If so why and for how long? Can a woman infect a man?

Can chlamydia be dorm for yrs and test negative? If so why and for how long? Can a woman infect a man?

Yes; for years; yes: Chlamydia won't necessarily produce symptoms, especially in women. Tests are not 100% accurate so you can get a negative test even if you have the disease (false negative). Yes, a woman can certainly infect a man. ...Read more

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Hello, I am a virgin, I tested positive for Chlamydia. My boyfriend has tested negative, could this be a false positive?

Hello, I am a virgin, I tested positive for Chlamydia. My boyfriend has tested negative, could this be a false positive?

More info needed: Something doesn't compute. Nearly impossible for a virgin (no penile-vaginal sex) to have chlamydia, and also unlikely your boyfriend gave it to you. His negative test makes sense, but your positive one doesn't. OTOH the standard nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT) are very accurate. Please add comment or a new question with more info: confirm you're female, exact tests done, sexual exposures. ...Read more

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If you think you had a false positive chlamydia test, have already taken the medication to treat it, can you re-test or is it too late?

If you think you had a false positive chlamydia test, have already taken the medication to treat it, can you re-test or is it too late?

You can retest: If you have been treated with proper dose of antibiotics, chances are the test will be negative most of the time if treatment is successful. ...Read more

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How can u get 1 positive chlamydia test swab only- and get negative tests right after? Had 2 confirmatory tests after- w/ swab/urine-negative

Trust positive test: If u had cervical swab positive for chlamydia, I would trust that result, and not have done confirmatory tests which may have not been collected properly. The risk of untreated Chlamydia far outweighs the risk of side-effects from treatment. Make sure your partner (s) get tested and treated, and do not resume sex with them until at least 7 days after u both have been treated. Use condoms. ...Read more

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Girlfriend tested positive for gonorrhoea and chlamydia I only did for gonorrhoea chlamydia test came negative is that possible? She cheated once

Girlfriend tested positive for gonorrhoea and chlamydia I only did for gonorrhoea chlamydia test came negative is that possible? She cheated once

It happens: You may have been lucky, or she may have other outlets. In the future consider condom use with any encounter, whether she or anyone else you connect with is on the pill. Condoms can reduce your risk of STD's but it does not eliminate it. ...Read more

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My partner tested positive for chlamydia and me negative. 4 years together is it possible they can go back and check if this was a false positive?

My partner tested positive for chlamydia and me negative. 4 years together is it possible they can go back and check if this was a false positive?

What type of test?: Did he get treated? It is likely that he had infection and was treated effectively and is no longer carrying the organism. He may still have antibody to chlamydia but not the organism. It would not do any harm to get retested by the Chlamydia nucleic acid. See this site for info.

http://www. Medicalhealthtests. Com/pathology-test/chlamydia-tests-serum. Html ...Read more

Dr. Hunter Handsfield
1,175 Doctors shared insights

Chlamydia Infection (Definition)

A sexually transmitted infection caused by a bacteria. Genital symptoms include burning on urination, vaginal or penile discharge, pain with sexual intercourse or ...Read more