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Chlamydia test withdrawn over concerns

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12:46 CET+01:00
Sweden's state pharmacy Apoteket is withdrawing a home testing kit for chlamydia, after new research showed that only six out of ten infected people were diagnosed by the test.

The Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control (SMI) is now advising those who have used the home test to retake the test at a hospital or local health centre.

"This poor result for the test meant that we felt we couldn't keep it," said Lars Rönbäck, head of Apoteket's medicines unit, to Dagens Nyheter.

Dr. Ingela Berggren at Stockholm County's disease prevention unit, said everyone who has taken the test, which was only used to test women, should receive medical advice.

"If you've used the home test, you should act like you haven't taken any test at all," she said. Even people who showed up positive on the test should get a second opinion, she said.

According to Dagens Nyheter, 4,000 testing kits have been sold by Apoteket, which has a monopoly on the sale of medicines in Sweden. This figure compares to 465,000 chlamydia tests carried out in the Swedish health service in 2005.

Hospital chlamydia tests are also not totally reliable, however, according to the newspaper. Swedish microbiologists have identified a new strain of the disease missed by most standard tests. One in six of those with chlamydia in the Swedish county of Halland carried the new strain.

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