• DSHS HIV/STD Program
    Post Office Box 149347, MC 1873
    Austin, TX 78714

    Phone: 737-255-4300

    Email the HIV/STD Program

    Email HIV, STD, Hepatitis C, and TB data requests to the Program – Use this email to request Texas HIV, STD, Hepatitis C, and TB data and statistics. Do not use this email to request treatment or infection history for individuals, or to request information on programs or services. Do not email personal, identifying health information such as HIV status, date of birth, or Social Security Number.

    For treatment/testing history, please contact your local health department.

    For information on HIV testing and services available to persons living with HIV, please contact your local HIV services organization.

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)

pidsideWhat is PID?

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, or PID, is an infection of the female reproductive system. It is a leading cause of infertility in the U.S. Left untreated, PID can result in serious health complications.

How do women get PID?

PID is often caused by a sexually transmitted disease (STD) like gonorrhea or chlamydia. However, you can get PID without having an STD.

Your chance of getting PID can be increased if:

  • You have an untreated STD
  • You have more than one sex partner
  • Your sex partner(s) has more than one partner
  • You have had PID before
  • You douche
  • You are under 25 years old and sexually active
  • If you start using an IUD (intrauterine device) for birth control, you have a small increased risk for PID in the first few weeks after insertion.

What are the symptoms of PID?

There is no specific test for PID. Doctors diagnose PID based on medical history, a physical exam, and blood and urine tests. Some women have very mild symptoms, while other women have more intense symptoms. Common symptoms include:

  • Pain in your lower abdomen
  • Fever
  • An unusual discharge or odor from your vagina
  • Pain and/or bleeding during sex
  • Burning sensation when you pee, or
  • Bleeding between periods

See a doctor if you have any of these symptoms.

You should also see a doctor if:

  • You or a partner think you were exposed to an STD.
  • You are sexually active and under 25 years old and have not gotten tested for chlamydia. Get tested for chlamydia every year.
  • You have not talked openly about your sexual behaviors with your partner(s).
  • You were treated for an STD but not tested for HIV and other STDs.

What happens if I get PID?

The earlier PID is treated, the less damage it will do to your reproductive system.

Left untreated, PID can cause:

  • ectopic pregnancy, a pregnancy outside the uterus that cannot survive
  • scar tissue in and around the fallopian tubes
  • miscarriage
  • infertility (not being able to get pregnant)
  • chronic pelvic pain
  • cystitis (inflammation of the bladder)

How is PID treated?

PID is treated with antibiotics. Getting treated for PID will not undo the damage that has already occurred. Make sure your partners are treated for all STDs so that you don’t get re-infected. Make sure you and your partners take all your medicine before having sex again.

If you have PID or any other STD:

Take all the medicine the doctor gives you, and make sure your partner(s) are treated. Don’t have sex until the doctor has told you it is okay, or use a condom to protect yourself and others. 

If you have PID, you are at a higher risk to get HIV if you are exposed to it.

How can I prevent PID?

  • Only have sex with someone who only has sex with you
  • Use a latex condom correctly every time you have sex
  • Do not douche unless a doctor tells you to


Last updated July 28, 2021