CDC recommends empiric treatment for PID if either of these minimum criteria are met:
Acute adnexal tenderness may be the most sensitive sign of upper genital tract infection.
Under some circumstances, a clinician may choose to treat with even less specific findings. The general recommendation is to err on the side of over treatment, given the high incidence of adverse outcomes with untreated PID.
Most women with PID have either mucopurulent cervical discharge or evidence of WBCs on a saline wet prep of vaginal secretions. If no WBCs are found on the wet prep, the diagnosis of PID is unlikely.
For more specific criteria for diagnosing PID, consult the 2006 CDC STD Treatment Guidelines.
Page last modified: June 3, 2009
Page last reviewed: June 3, 2009
Content Source: Division of STD Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention