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Understanding: How is PID Diagnosed

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Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is a serious infection of the female reproductive tract, particularly impacting sexually active women of reproductive age. 

If left undiagnosed, this disease can lead to severe complications, posing a potential threat to fertility.

Hence, it is important to get tested for this infection as soon as you can.

However, PID can be confused with other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) or disorders, complicating the diagnosis process.

Therefore, individuals often have a common doubt- “How is PID diagnosed?” 

Let us proceed with this article and clear confusion regarding diagnosis and learn everything in detail.

How is PID Diagnosed

Unfortunately, there is no single test that can detect Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) with accuracy.

Hence, your doctor will conduct a number of tests and examinations to determine if you are affected by this disease.

These tests include analyzing medical history, pelvic exams, blood tests, and ultrasounds.

Let us understand the significance of these diagnostic tests in depth.

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  • Medical History

    As a first step, your doctor may inquire about your sexual activity patterns, any past cases of 

    Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), and the contraception methods you use. 

    This information helps them understand and assess your current health status effectively.

    Symptom Evaluation

    Picture of Woman suffering from nausea Source: africa_images
    Woman suffering from nausea

    Learning about your symptoms is crucial for your doctor to diagnose PID effectively.

    Some common PID symptoms include pain, abnormal discharge, Nausea, and painful urination.

    Inform your doctor about any symptoms you face, even if they seem minor. This will ensure an accurate evaluation and diagnosis.

    Pelvic Exam

    A pelvic exam involves inserting two gloved fingers into the vaginal opening to check the reproductive organs.

    During this exam, your doctor will analyze your pelvic region for tenderness and swelling. 

    They may also use cotton swabs to take fluid samples from your vagina and cervix. 

    These samples are tested for signs of infections such as Gonorrhea and Chlamydia.

    During your pelvic exam, consider openly discussing any discomfort or questions with your doctor and practice deep breathing to make the exam more comfortable.

    Blood and Urine Test

    Blood and urine tests are important tools for assessing the health of your reproductive system.

    These tests may be used to screen for pregnancy, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), or other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). 

    Additionally, they may measure white blood cell counts or other indicators of infection or inflammation.


    picture of ultrasound deviceSource: getty_images

    Ultrasound is a specialized test that uses sound waves to create visual images of the reproductive organs. 

    During an ultrasound for PID, a specialized probe is gently placed on the abdomen or inserted into the vagina to take images of the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. 

    These images help doctors assess the condition of the reproductive organs and detect any abnormalities.

    Any inflammation or fluid buildup may indicate the presence of PID.

    If your diagnosis is still unclear after these tests, your doctor may suggest other tests, such as Laparoscopy or Endometrial biopsy, to confirm PID.

    Endometrial biopsy and Laparoscopy tests may result in complications such as infection, bleeding, or damage to nearby organs. Discuss these risks thoroughly with your doctor before undergoing the procedure.

    How is Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Treated

    After diagnosing your condition, your doctor will prescribe a detailed treatment plan for PID.

    Since STIs are the primary cause of PID, antibiotics are the first-line treatment for this disease.

    These may include drugs such as Doxycycline and Azithromycin.

    In severe cases, surgery may be recommended.

    Additionally, many natural remedies are available to complement the medications.

    However, it is important to remember that completely curing PID may not be possible in every case.

    If you are interested in learning more about whether PID can be cured,Read Finding Out: Can PID Be Cured?


    Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is a severe infection caused by Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) that can harm the uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries.

    And since there is no single test for the diagnosis of PID, people often wonder, “How is PID diagnosed?” 

    Diagnosing PID typically requires a combination of medical history, physical examination, symptom evaluation, and laboratory tests.

    These tests involve blood and urine tests, pelvic exams, and ultrasound.

    Additionally, your doctor might recommend procedures such as Laparoscopy or Endometrial Biopsy to confirm PID.

    Following the diagnosis, PID is treated using specific antibiotics such as Doxycycline and Azithromycin.

    Hence, it is recommended to prioritize prompt diagnosis to receive accurate and timely treatment for PID.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is the best way to diagnose PID?

    Diagnosing PID usually involves a medical history review, physical exam, and tests like pelvic exam, urine test, or vaginal swab. 
    Imaging tests or Laparoscopy may be needed for unclear cases.

    Does PID show up on ultrasound?

    Yes, severe PID may show up on ultrasound.
    Ultrasound tests aim to detect signs of PID-related complications like fluid buildup or inflammation in the pelvic organs.
    However, some mild cases of PID may show a normal ultrasound report.

    What is the fastest way to cure PID?

    Proper treatment with antibiotics under a certified doctor is the fastest way to cure PID. 
    It is important to complete the full course of medication to ensure the infection clears completely.

    What does PID discharge look like?

    PID discharge can vary among people. 
    It might be yellow or green, have an unusual odor, or appear as increased vaginal discharge. 
    It is best to consult a certified doctor for proper evaluation.

    What can be mistaken with PID?

    Conditions that can be mistaken for PID include Urinary Tract Infections, Appendicitis, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), and Endometriosis.
    Proper diagnosis by a licensed doctor is important for accurate treatment.

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    Photo of author Janet Fudge
    Janet Fudge is a highly skilled and experienced pharmacologist who serves as a contributing writer for With a strong academic background from a premier US University and a passion for helping others, Janet has become a trusted voice in the pharmaceutical world. After completing her Doctor of Pharmacy degree, Janet embarked on a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry, working with various clients, including hospitals, retail pharmacies, and drug manufacturers. Her in-depth knowledge of pharmacology and dedication to patient-centered care has led her to excel in her field. As a writer for, Janet uses her wealth of expertise to provide readers with accurate, reliable, and up-to-date information on various topics related to medicine and healthcare. Her engaging writing style and ability to break down complex topics into easily digestible content make her a valuable resource for healthcare professionals and the general public.
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