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Management of first-episode pelvic inflammatory disease in primary care: results from a large UK primary care database

journal contribution
posted on 2023-06-07, 15:37 authored by Amanda Nicholson, Greta Rait, Tarita Murray-Thomas, Catherine H Mercer, Jackie Cassell, Gwenda Hughes
Background Prompt and effective treatment of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) may help prevent long-term complications. Many PID cases are seen in primary care but it is not known how well management follows recommended guidelines. Aim To estimate the incidence of first-episode PID cases seen in UK general practice, describe their management, and assess its adequacy in relation to existing guidelines. Design of study Cohort study. Setting UK general practices contributing to the General Practice Research Database (GPRD). Method Women aged 15 to 40 years, consulting with a first episode of PID occurring between 30 June 2003 and 30 June 2008 were identified, based on the presence of a diagnostic code. The records within 28 days either side of the diagnosis date were analysed to describe management. Results A total of 3797 women with a first-ever coded diagnosis of PID were identified. Incidence fell during the study period from 19.3 to 8.9/10 000 person-years. Thirty-four per cent of cases had evidence of care elsewhere, while 2064 (56%) appeared to have been managed wholly within the practice. Of these 2064 women, 34% received recommended treatment including metronidazole, and 54% had had a Chlamydia trachomatis test, but only 16% received both. Management was more likely to follow guidelines in women in their 20s, and later in the study period. Conclusion These analyses suggest that the management of PID in UK primary care, although improving, does not follow recommended guidelines for the majority of women. Further research is needed to understand the delivery of care in general practice and the coding of such complex syndromic conditions.


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  • Published


British Journal of General Practice




Royal College of General Practitioners





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  • Primary Care and Public Health Publications

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