Chlamydia trachomatis (hereafter CT) is Gram-negative, obligate intracellular pathogen. It causes the world's most common non-viral sexually transmitted disease. India is home to the world's greatest burden of infectious diseases, yet information on prevalence rates of CT is scarce. This article systematically reviews the literature for the prevalence rates and testing methods in India. A total of 27 studies were included. Four main patients groups (symptomatic women, infertile women, pregnant women and asymptomatic population groups) could be identified with varying rates of CT (0.1%-32% using PCR, 2.4%-75% using ELISA serology). Most of the studies originated from urban settings, 11 of them from New Delhi. In-house PCR was the most common diagnostic technique used generating the following ranges in prevalence for the four group studies: symptomatic women 10%-50%, pregnant women 0.1%-2.5% and asymptomatic populations 0.9%-24.5%. The rates among infertile women were 9%-68% based on serology results. The prevalence rates featured in this paper are in line with other locations across the Indian subcontinent. This review highlights the extreme heterogeneity in the limited studies available in India on CT and the need for standardized guidelines for diagnosis and management of CT in India. The availability of resources should be considered in the formulation of recommendations.
Graphical Abstract Figure. One sentence summary: The first systematic literature review on Chlamydia trachomatis in India.