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RESEARCH ARTICLE

Increasing chlamydia diagnoses but little change in hospitalisations for ectopic pregnancy and infertility among women in New South Wales from 2001 to 2008

Bette Liu A F , Basil Donovan A B , Jim Parker C D , Rebecca Guy A , Jane Hocking E , John M. Kaldor A , Handan Wand A and Louisa Jorm C
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A The Kirby Institute, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia.

B Sydney Sexual Health Centre, Sydney Hospital, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia.

C School of Medicine, University of Western Sydney, Penrith, NSW 2751, Australia.

D Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Campbelltown Hospital, Campbelltown, NSW 2560, Australia.

E School of Population Health, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Vic. 3010, NSW, Australia.

F Corresponding author. Email: Bliu@kirby.unsw.edu.au

Sexual Health 9(4) 355-359 https://doi.org/10.1071/SH11143
Submitted: 11 November 2011  Accepted: 30 January 2012   Published: 11 May 2012

Abstract

Background: As genital chlamydia (Chlamydia trachomatis) notifications have increased in Australia, time trends in hospitalisations for ectopic pregnancy and female infertility between 2001 and 2008 in New South Wales (NSW), Australia, and their relationship to trends in chlamydia notifications in women were assessed. Methods: Annual rates of chlamydia notification, and hospitalisations for female infertility or ectopic pregnancy in women aged 15–44 years in NSW were calculated using routinely collected data. Chlamydia notifications and hospital separations occurring within each year belonging to the same woman were linked using probabilistic linkage of identifiers so that multiple notifications and admissions for one woman in each calendar year were only counted once. Results: From 2001 to 2008, the annual rate of chlamydia diagnoses in women increased from 157 to 477 per 100 000 population (Ptrend < 0.001). Over the same period, the annual hospitalisation rate for women with an ectopic pregnancy decreased from 14.3 to 12.6 per 1000 births (Ptrend < 0.001). This decrease was mostly in women aged 25–44 years, with no appreciable fall in women aged 15–24 years (Ptrend = 0.8). Meanwhile, the hospitalisation rate for women with infertility of female origin did not follow a consistent trend: between 2001 and 2008, it fluctuated between a low of 479 and a high of 554 per 10 000 women who were seeking pregnancy. Conclusions: These trends in ectopic pregnancy and female infertility suggest that the large increase in chlamydia notifications may not reflect hospitalisations for these two proposed chlamydia-related sequelae.

Additional keywords: Australia, pelvic inflammatory disease, reproduction, sequelae.


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