Self-management

Many women are diagnosed with PID along with a sexually transmitted infection. Finding out that you have an STI can be traumatic. Take steps immediately to get treated and to prevent reinfection.

If you've experienced more than one episode of pelvic inflammatory disease, you're at greater risk of infertility. If you've been trying to become pregnant without success, make an appointment with your doctor for an infertility evaluation.

Your doctor or a reproductive health specialist might do tests to determine whether or not your history of pelvic inflammatory disease is causing the problem.

To reduce your risk of pelvic inflammatory disease:

  • Practice safe sex. Use condoms every time you have sex, limit your number of partners, and ask about a potential partner's sexual history.
  • Talk to your doctor about contraception. Many forms of contraception do not protect against the development of PID. Using barrier methods, such as a condom, might help to reduce your risk. Even if you take birth control pills, it's still important to use a condom every time you have sex to protect against STIs.
  • Get tested. If you're at risk of an STI, such as chlamydia, make an appointment with your doctor for testing. Set up a regular screening schedule with your doctor if needed. Early treatment of an STI gives you the best chance of avoiding PID.
  • Request that your partner be tested. If you have pelvic inflammatory disease or an STI, advise your partner to be tested and, if necessary, treated. This can prevent the spread of STIs and possible recurrence of PID.
  • Don't douche. Douching upsets the balance of bacteria in your vagina.
May 18, 2017
References
  1. Frequently asked questions. Gynecologic problems FAQ077. Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Pelvic-Inflammatory-Disease-PID. Accessed Jan. 17, 2017.
  2. Pelvic inflammatory disease fact sheet. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/std/pid/stdfact-pid.htm. Accessed Jan. 16, 2017.
  3. Ferri FF. Pelvic inflammatory disease. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2017. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2017. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Jan. 16, 2017.
  4. Lee M. Pelvic inflammatory disease. Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants. 2017;30:47.
  5. Klausner JD, et al. Pelvic inflammatory disease. In: Current Diagnosis & Treatment of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. 1st ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2007. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Jan. 16, 2017.
  6. Livengood CH, et al. Clinical features and diagnosis of pelvic inflammatory disease. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 16, 2017.
  7. Peipert JF, et al., eds. Long-term complications of pelvic inflammatory disease. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 20, 2017.
  8. Butler Tobah YS (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 27, 2017.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)