Concordance of chlamydia infections of the rectum and urethra in same-sex male partnerships: A cross-sectional analysis

Vincent J. Cornelisse, Christopher J. Sherman, Jane S. Hocking, Henrietta Williams, Lei Zhang, Marcus Y. Chen, Catriona S. Bradshaw, Christopher K. Fairley, Eric P. F. Chow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Our study aimed to describe the concordance of chlamydia infections of the rectum and urethra in men who have sex with men (MSM) and their male partners. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of chlamydia in MSM and their male sexual partners both attending Melbourne Sexual Health Centre (MSHC), Australia, between February 2011 and March 2015. We excluded partnerships where testing for chlamydia at both the rectum and urethra were not undertaken. Results: Our study included 473 partnerships (946 men). 30 men had urethral chlamydia, of whom 14 (47%, 95% CI 28 to 66) had a partner with rectal chlamydia. 46 men had rectal chlamydia, of whom 14 (30%, 95% CI 18 to 46) had a partner with urethral chlamydia. The proportion of men with rectal chlamydia when their partner had urethral chlamydia was significantly higher than the proportion of men with urethral chlamydia when their partner had rectal chlamydia (McNemar's p = 0.02). Conclusions: This is the first study of chlamydia concordance in male sexual partnerships and suggests that transmission of chlamydia between the urethra and rectum may be less efficient than has been reported for transmission between the urethra and cervix in heterosexual couples. It also suggests that transmission from the urethra to the rectum may be more efficient than in the opposite direction.

Original languageEnglish
Article number22
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2017


  • Chlamydia
  • Chlamydia trachomatis [B03.440.]
  • Couple
  • Disease Transmission
  • Dyad
  • Homosexuality [F01.145.802.975.500]
  • Infectious [N06.850.310]
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Partnership
  • Sexual Partners [M01.778]
  • Transmission

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