How long does it take for Pelvic Inflammatory disease to effect your infertility?

I am pretty sure I have PID, and my doctor has said it is the most likely thing, I am waiting for tests friday. I went to my other doctor in January complaining of pain during sex and odd pains around my pelvis, only to have a STI check and be told that it was unlikely I would have PID as my results for STI's were negative. My doctor completely dismissed the idea and was adamant I had endo. Now here I am months down the line and feeling extremely upset about what this may have done to my fertility. Having children is literally all I could possibly ask for and whilst I don't plan on having babies for a few years yet I am really concerned about the progression of my PID and the damage it may have done.

I have found on the internet that if a woman is feeling pain, and major symptoms then it means alot of damage has already been done. I have had stinging and sharp pains around my bellybutton, aches, twinges and shooting pain around my pelvis, deep pain during sex, sharp pain in my upper right side and a tender and bloated stomach. I feel like this maybe a sign it was discovered to late :(

I have also read that if caught early usually damage is minimal but I can't find anywhere where it says what is classed as early. I am wondering if you have any info on this?

I am so so upset about this and it's worrying me sick that I may be infertile.

25 Replies

  • Depends on the cause of inflammation , some inflammation doesn't cause infertility, there are a lot of causes for pelvic inflammation.

  • Hi Hannah 291.

    About 10 months ago, I was where you are now. Feeling scared, worried and frustrated I had been to the doctors numerous times.

    After them thinking it was endo, I found out I had PID for a while and with no STI history. It was actually my own body causing the problem by bacteria getting up into the pelvis where it shouldn't be. Since then I have had PID again.

    With symptoms so bad I struggle to walk some days. I have shooting pains every day and constant back ache.

    After my laparoscopy, the consultant found I had a blockage in my tubes. He believed that my PID developed to salpingitis (infection of the Fallopian tubes).

    He believed that both of my tubes may be blocked. This devastated me as I'm a primary school teacher, I love children and plan on having my own.

    I went for a dye test yesterday and it was amazing that some dye went through. They didn't seem clear but partially and for that I am grateful.

    I am back to the gynaecologist next week.

    I really hope this doesn't bring you down too much and that you find answers.

    Please let me know how you get on.


  • I'm so sorry for what you're going through cupcake21 :( but it is good news that some of the ink went through. I've researched this alot and it seems theres been a lot of miracle babies who've been born despite the mothers being told they wouldn't be able to have children, so theres always a chance.

    May I ask when how long you've had PID for and how did you know how long you've had it for? and did you have symptoms the whole time?

    It's so frustrating that this happened to both of us, given the fact we've not had any STI's. I'm sickened by the fact I've always been extremely safe and I haven't even had that many sexual partners and yet here I am, with a disease which is usually caused by chlamydia :(

    It also makes it frustrating that it's not from an STI, because if that was the case I could at least think 'I had unprotected sex 4 months ago, so I must have got chlamydia then, thus I've had PID for up to 4 months'. But because it's from my own bacteria, for all I know I could have had it for years, perhaps even before I even became sexually active. It really is the most unfair thing!

    Thank you for the info you shared, it's so helpful to hear real stories of women with PID.


  • Yes, it is great news for me but doesn't yet explain what it causing my pain.

    I know how frustrated you feel. I had to have 5 STI tests as they couldn't believe that it wasn't caused by that. Plus myself and my partner were virgins before our relationship.

    But there is no real way of knowing how long you have had PID for, all you can do is try to assess the damage.

    Don't panic because I did but I read that early treatment for PID is a few days for up to a week.

    All I know is that I had pelvic pain and pain during sex for a while before the discharge. The pinical for me was heavy bleeding after intercourse whilst on holiday. It was terrifying. So when I got back home, I got checked out and here I am.

    When I had the second episode about a month ago, I knew the signs so it was about a week with that episode.

    I'm so sorry for what you're going through.

    Any thoughts I can give, I gladly will.


  • I'm praying the damage isn't to much but I have a bad feeling about it. I've had symptoms for about two months now, although when I first went to my doctor (who dismissed it completely) I had literally had my first symptom the day before.

    I'm guessing by the simple fact I keep getting pains and aches that damage is being done as I type, although its not exactly pain, just slight shooting sensations and aches. Its heartbreaking :(


  • I know. We all thought, my gynaecologist included that both of my tubes would be blocked. You may feel it and it may be doing damage I'm not going to lie. But I can honestly say please don't give up hope.

    I'm back to my consultant a week today.

    What is your next step?


  • Well I can honestly say pid is a. Bitch. I sit typing this I can feel the bacteria eating up my insides "no pain kileers" waiting for my test results on Friday. My discharge is getting more disgusting now I know I may have pid than ever. I think i'll get rid of all my underwear once I am given treatment and am done. Pain pain pain. :'( . And am always so careful with my vaginal hygiene how could I have gotten this!?! I feel like am going to go lesbian after this cos guys are disgusting. I wonder wat bacteria is causing damage? If some cause more damage faster than others. Please someone tell me I can have kids! Maybe I should just get pregnant now and save myself the stress of worrying about infertility... I want to cry, and I dont cry easily!!!

  • Dear Cupcake and Hannah,

    Cupcake is right that you should remain optimistic. I share what you say about the injustice regarding non chlamydia infections and bacteria. There is a lot to learn about this and it doesn't get any attention. It can also exist alongside endometriosis, appendicitis etc etc. We are just about to publish detailed information on the website about PID, appendicitis and some other topics that are rarely addressed.

  • Hey Hannah291, I'm in a very similar position here. About 2 weeks ago I went to my local clinic to get tested for any STI's. They also said that they think I have PID because I have quite a few symptoms of it, lower abdominal pain, back pain etc..Anyway, I got my test results back but I had no STI's- The last time I had unprotected sex was 6 months ago, I thought it could have been from then, but since finding out it has nothing to do with that, i'm completely freaking out too, also thinking I could have had it for a lot longer with no symptoms! I also don't have Thrush or anything like that, so I still have no idea of the cause. I started the treatment for it almost a week ago (by the way, the side effects are ridiculous- nausea, insomnia, loss of appetite and headaches) and tomorrow they should be checking to see if it is working.

    ANYWAY- I've also been wondering what classes as ''early'' and have asked this question myself on other sites with no answer. Unfortunately, from the few sites I did find an answer on, they said ''early'' meaning within a week. This is a bit of a nightmare (a lot) as who knows what damage could already have been caused. However I have read somewhere that (correct me if i'm wrong) only 5-10% of women with PID become infertile, and it's usually with recurring cases. I'm trying to revolve my thoughts around this fact because it's the only form of reassurance I have at the minute, until they offer me a scan too take a look at the damage after treatment is over.

    I'm only 17, it's 5:52am and i've had 2 hours sleep today. I'm so glad I found this post. I hope they found out what your problem was and it was solved with no complications!

  • Hi. I've just recently started showing signs of pid I am 18 with no type of insurance . I am just curious to what type of test I am looking at ?

  • A simple swap test to know what bacteria is up in there tryiing to ruin your life. That is if ur sure it's pid

  • Then u start on the antibiotics

  • Hey little green bag i can say am almost as u i was sent for tests for chlamidia but really scared am only 21 and want a baby desperatly i have neva gotten prégnant in my life and i started having sex from 12 really scared that i Will neva b able to conceive

  • Hi :) I'm curious if you've had any diagnosis yet? I've never had a STI either. I've been trying to conceive for two years. I had ovarian cysts, my symptoms are exactly how you've described. Doctor's first thought I had appendicitis.. I'm still trying to be positive but I completely understand where you are coming from. Its the not knowing what your future holds. I hope you've had good news.xx

  • Hello, I haven't been formally diagnosed for PID as my doctor is adamant its impossible to get unless you've had an STI, even though many medical websites including the NHS say otherwise. I have just finished a course of antibiotics for PID as I asked to go on them and I have to say the tenderness around my ovaries and pelvis has completely gone. I did unfortunately still have strange pains right after my period but I'm still confused as to what that maybe. I have a scan at the end of this month and maybe that will shine some light on it. I hope you find out what it is soon xx

  • I just ran across this and I totally feel your pain. I have been having the most awful pain in my abdomen and pelvic area for the past 4 months and it's getting worse and just moved to my pelvic area about a month ago. I didn't even know what pid was until about 2 weeks ago. I was tested for stds and the test were negative so I have no clue what is going on the pain is so bad sometimes my legs hurt and get shaky and my abdomen feels like it is going to explode. I have had vaginal problems pretty much my hole life and it has just been bad on and off for the past several years. I went to the er for it a few days ago and they did an exam and said my uterus was enlarged and said it was from my period. I'm going to see an obgyn Monday. I'm scared out of my mind over this. I have been crying none stop about it. I have been very dizzy and just generally feeling sick. It sux I'm really hoping and praying they can figure it out brfore it's to late

  • PID is usually acute, short term, and clears with antibiotics. What makes PID so dangerous is that its symptoms can often be very difficult to detect. In fact, up to 60% of women do not even recognize that they are infected with PID. Those who do have symptoms may experience mild or severe ones, including: lower abdominal pain unusual vaginal discharge (often yellow or green) pain during intercourse burning during urination irregular menstrual bleeding pain in the upper right abdomen If you are experiencing any symptoms of pelvic inflammatory disease, it is important to seek treatment immediately. The longer you go without treatment, the higher your risk of experiencing health complications. Treatment generally consists of oral or injectable antibiotics that are effective against a wide range of bacteria. If you have severe symptoms, you may be hospitalized where you can receive intravenous antibiotics. Though antibiotics are often effective at killing the PID infection, they cannot reverse any damage that the disease has already done. If you are suffering from severe scarring, surgery may be required. 15 % of women with PID become infertile or 1 in 8.

  • Hi everyone. I realise this is quite an old post but hoping someone can shed some light. Yesterday I went to the doctors to figure out the cause of ongoing lower abdominal pain and recent pain durinh sex. I'm only 19 and have been with my boyfriend for the last 3 years. I'm obviously shocked by my diagnosis as it's traditionally a sexually transmitted disease but am adamant this isn't the cause of mine. I'm too terrified of the implications it's had on my fertility. I cannot imagine the upset if that was the case. Is there any scan I can have to see if it has done? I've had pains for years, starting before I was sexually active. I went to many doctors appointments and even had an ultra sound which was inconclusive. Does that mean that was not PID back then? I'm concerned I've had it for years!

    So nice to know that other people have the same problem (in the nicest way possible). Please let me know if you have nah advice as it's causing enormous amount of stress.

  • I'm very sorry you are going/went through this!! My experience was the following and I hope it helps someone:

    I've only had 2 sexual partners in my life. My first partner and I were both virgins and my second partner had only been with 1 other person once. I got the Mirena IUD about three years ago today ironically. I never experienced any real problems aside from cramping and no menstrual periods while on Mirena until Feb 2012. I was experiencing weird discharge (white sometimes yellow or bloody mucus, bumpy), some odor, pelvic pain to the point where I could hardly walk, burning with sex and urination, pain during sex, fevers, and I got really sick. I was worried Mirena had migrated (rare) and I went to go to the doctor to make sure that I didn't have a yeast infection (which I thought I had). I went and got diagnosed with Bacterial Vaginitis. I started antibiotics and my symptoms seemed to get worse. I developed painful back and pelvic pain. A couple days later I went back as an emergency because the doctor said I might have an infection. I was diagnosed that day with PID. I got a shot and antibiotics for the PID. That night I went into the ER because of the pain and I was diagnosed once again as PID. I went to my primary care doctor two days later. I was there about 30 minutes when the doctor refused to give me another pelvic exam and sent me to the emergency room in an ambulance. It turns out that my infection had gotten worse and also developed a bladder infection. I got tons and tons of HIV/AIDS, STDS/STI, URINE, and PREGNANCY tests done and they were all negative. I've never had and STD/STI, but I did however had 2 miscarriages 3 years ago. I had ultrasounds and cat scans done at the emergency room. I got on medication and when I finished the medication I did feel better. I didn't go to a follow up appointment because I traveled out of the country. Fast forward two an a half months and I developed similar symptoms. I went to the doctor and I have a high likelihood of having PID and I am currently being treated for it. I have a high likelihood of being infertile because of having another episode of PID. Its unfortunate because although I don't want children right now, me and my partner would love kids in the future. I beg you that if you doctor is not completely listening and taking your concerns seriously, Go to the ER!!!!! I know many don't have insurance and it might be costly but to me I'd rather pay and get treated and have a better opportunity of having children than let it get worse. Right now I have planning on having my Mirena removed. I'm looking into going to a fertility specialist and another OB/GYN. Listen to your bodies ladies and if you feel something that isn't normal and you know you aren't okay, don't take any chances!!!!

  • I'm exactly the same as you. The symptoms are identical. My doc has also said no to it being PID and said it's endometriosis. I've had a hysterectomy in April 2016 cause my consultant said I had adenomyosis - the pathology result from my womb stated no endometriosis found in my womb. I still have the same symptoms as before all 3 of my operations only it seems to get worse each time I go under the knife. I'm desperate for a real diagnosis xx

  • Can u still have pms with pid

  • Lilmama3 you can still have normal periods as you did before the PID, and they may not be affected. Everyone suffers different complications and after effects. I had PID for at least 4 months and now get ridiculous cramping pain as if I still have PID, just before and during every period

  • Might help to add I had it a year ago

  • Hey I'm new here and I've had pelvic pain on and off for the last year. The first time it happened it was attributed to a cyst and went away over time. Then it came back with discharge, I went to the doctor and they said there was no infection or anything. Now it's back again, for a few weeks and there's starting to be a lot of discharge. I'm going to the doctor but I'm worried I waited too long and I'm in trouble. This is causing me a tremendous amount of stress. Could someone please help?

  • Go to your doctor and have some swabs taken to rule out infection. This should put your mind at rest. Maybe ask for a referral to a specialist if the pain persists. Hang in there, pelvic pain is hard to deal with. Take care.