What You Need to Know About Pelvic Inflammatory Disease with Dr. Joon Song
If your doctor thinks you might have pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), it is imperative to seek proper medical care. From the signs and symptoms to the treatments and causes, gynecology practitioner Dr. Joon Song breaks down everything you need to know. Practicing gynecology since 1992, Dr. Song established his own practice in 2012, and focuses on all areas of women’s gynecological health conditions ranging anywhere from annual examinations to surgical solutions.
Defining Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Pelvic inflammatory disease is an infection of a women’s reproductive organs. Dr. Joon Song explains that it is a complication often caused by some STI’s, including chlamydia and gonorrhea. It usually begins with an infection in the cervix, which then spreads up into the uterus and fallopian tubes. The infection can spread beyond the reproductive organs into the tissues surrounding them.
How Do You Contract PID?
PID can be caused by germs and bacteria from a sexually transmitted infection (STI) as mentioned above; however, Dr. Joon Song explains that sometimes PID is caused by normal bacteria found in the vagina. Approximately 1 million cases are diagnosed each year in the United States. You have an increased risk of contraction it if you are under the age of 25 and have more than one sexual partner, have an STI, or recently had an IUD inserted.
Signs and Symptoms
Many women do not know they have PID because they do not show any signs or symptoms; however, when symptoms do occur, they can range from mild to serious. Dr. Joon Song explains that there are several key symptoms related to PID, and they include the following: pain in the lower abdomen, fever, vaginal discharge, painful sex, pain when urinating, irregular menstrual periods, pain in the upper right abdomen. It is important to note that PID can come on fast, with extreme pain and fever, especially if it is caused by gonorrhea.
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, you can receive a physical exam by your doctor who will also run tests for STIs. If you discover that you do have PID, your doctor or nurse will give you antibiotics to treat it. Most of the time, two antibiotics are used to work against many different types of bacteria. Your doctor may suggest you go to the hospital for your PID if you are very sick, are pregnant, your symptoms do not go away after taking all of your antibiotics, or you have an abscess in a fallopian tube or ovary. If you do not treat your PID, it could lead to serious problems including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain.
Always Consult Your Physician
If you want to try and prevent PID altogether, Dr. Joon Song suggests getting an STI test at least once per year depending on various factors and be sure to use condoms when engaging in sexual intercourse. If you have any concerns or questions about PID and your personal health, always consult your health care physicians for your best next steps.