The purpose of this investigation was to determine the incidence of cervicitis due to Chlamydia trachomatis in rural pregnant women, urban pregnant women, and urban nonpregnant women in Georgia. Evaluation of endocervical chlamydial cultures from 447 women showed prevalence rates for C trachomatis cervicitis of 12% in the urban pregnant group, 7% in urban nonpregnant women, and 21% in rural pregnant women. Fewer rural pregnant women (2%) reported a previous history of C trachomatis cervicitis than urban pregnant women (9%) and urban nonpregnant women (19%). Data from this study imply that screening for C trachomatis may be done less frequently in rural women than in urban women. The high prevalence of C trachomatis infection observed in rural pregnant women emphasizes the importance of routinely screening this group as currently recommended. Laboratory testing for C trachomatis may be overlooked because of insufficient funds and an emphasis on other sexually transmitted diseases.
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