Prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis infections in symptomatic women by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) immunofluorescence and Giemsa stain
Chlamydia trachomatis is a ubiquitous human pathogen that is responsible for the most prevalent bacterial sexually transmitted disease worldwide. Studies show that polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is more sensitive than cellular culture for detection of C. trachomatis infections. The aim of this study is to compare different laboratory methods, including Giemsa staining, direct immunofluorescence assay (DFA) and PCR for detection of C. trachomatis in women with urethral symptoms. In this study, 130 women with urethral symptoms admitted in the gynecology clinic, were used and specimens were obtained with endocervical swab for Giemsa staining, DFA and PCR. All the cases underwent these three techniques. Demographic data and the medical history of patients were obtained by direct interview; however, the mean age of cases was 33.8±9.06. Clinical symptoms included abnormal vaginal discharge in 101 cases (77.7%), spotting in 14 cases (10.8%), dysmenorrheal in 7 cases (5.4%), irritation in 6 cases (4.6%) and dysuria in 2 cases (1.5%). In DFA technique, 5 cases (3.8%) were positive and 3 (2.3%) were suspicious, while in the PCR technique, 6 cases (4.6%) were positive for C. trachomatis. However, 3 suspicious cases with DFA were negative in PCR. There was no positive case for C. trachomatis in Giemsa staining. In conclusion, C. trachomatis was not frequent in this study and it can be concluded that this infection was not a major hygienic problem in the same populations that were previously studied. Consequently, the causes that necessitate monogamy could be related to religious causes. Frequency of Chlamydia detection of DFA and PCR was same in the two groups. Nonetheless, Giemsa staining is not a reliable method for evaluating C. trachomatis.
Key words: Chlamydia trachomatis, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), direct immunofluorescence assay (DFA).