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Chlamydia and Infertility in Fairfield County: A Silent but Deadly Factor
Women suffering from chlamydia in Fairfield County — the area's most commonly reported sexually transmitted disease — may not realize it's a major contributor to infertility, health officials say.
According to Dr. Gad Lavy, Stamford-based medical director of the New England Fertility Institute, half of women seeking infertility intervention have unknowingly suffered damage to their fallopian tubes because of STDs, primarily chlamydia.
Most women with this damage are unaware of the infection because it is often symptomless, said Lavy, a reproductive endocrinologist who has assisted in the creation of 15,000 babies through embryonic implantation.
The problem is especially serious among typical infertility clinic patients, he added, because those women generally are nearing the end of their childbearing years.
"There is no time," Lavy said. "Patients come here when the window is about to close" in their 30s and early 40s.
In Fairfield County, reported chlamydia cases appear to be in moderate decline, according to the Connecticut Department of Public Health. In 2005, 2,364 cases (a rate of 268 per 100,000 population) were reported. In the first six months of 2010, 967 cases have been reported.