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Assessment of Chlamydia trachomatis prevalence by PCR and LCR in women presenting for termination of pregnancy
  1. Suzanne M Garland1,
  2. Sepehr Tabrizi1,
  3. Julene Hallo1,
  4. Shujun Chen1
  1. 1Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, The Royal Women's Hospital, Grattan Street, Carlton, Victoria 3053, Australia
  1. Professor S M Garland garlands{at}


Objectives: To determine the prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis in a patient population presenting for legal termination of pregnancy by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and ligase chain reaction (LCR), from first catch urine and self administered tampons, and comparing with the traditionally collected endocervical swab tested by both PCR and culture.

Methods: Consecutive women attending for legal termination of pregnancy were screened for chlamydia by patient collected first catch urine and tampon, and physician collected endocervical swab.

Results: Of 1175 patients with complete samples, there were 33 (2.8%) in whom chlamydia was detected by two or more assays from one or more sample site. Chlamydia was detected equally well by both PCR and LCR in first catch urine (p = 0.25), tampon (p = 0.5), and endocervical swab (p = 0.5). However, both PCR and LCR were significantly better than culture of an endocervical swab (p = 0.0005) for detection of C trachomatis.

Conclusion: The prevalence of chlamydia in patients presenting for termination of pregnancy was 2.8%. A simple efficient way of performing screening for chlamydia for women presenting for termination of pregnancy is by first catch urine or tampon, which can be tested by the highly sensitive amplification assays, PCR or LCR.

  • polymerase chain reaction
  • ligase chain reaction
  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • pregnancy

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