A contagious catarrhal inflammation of the genital mucous membrane, transmitted chiefly by coitus and due to Neisseria gonorrhoeae; may involve the lower or upper genital tract, especially the urethra, endocervix, and uterine tubes, or spread to the peritoneum and rarely to the heart, joints, or other structures by way of the bloodstream.
Alternative Name: Clap, drip.
Gonorrhoea is a commonly occurring sexually transmitted disease caused by a bacterium named, Neisseria Gonorrhoea. The growth of this particular bacterium is favored by warm, moist conditions like in the reproductive tract. This disease, which may occur both in men as well as women, can also show growth in the mouth, eyes, throat and anus.
The incubation period of the bacterium is 15 to 30 days, during which it may show symptoms like, dysuria, projectile urination, marked cervical inflammation, etc. Men usually have a risk of just 20% of getting infected by a women having gonorrhea as against women, who are at a risk of nearly 50%.
Although any sexually active person can get gonorrhea, it is most prevalent among those from 15 to 30. Women who have vaginal intercourse with an infected man have a 60 to 90 percent chance of becoming infected; while men who have vaginal sex with an infected woman have a significantly lower 30 to 50 percent chance of becoming infected by this sexually transmitted disease.
Gonorrhoea is a very common infectious disease. CDC estimates that more than 700,000 persons in the U.S. get new gonorrheal infections each year. Only about half of these infections are reported to CDC. In the US, confirmed cases of gonorrhea, chlamydial infection, and syphilis must be reported to the public health system.
Gonorrhoea can cause serious problems if it goes untreated. It can spread from one area of the reproductive tract to other surrounding parts. Girls who have had a pelvic infection with gonorrhea are more likely to have a pregnancy in the tube (“ectopic pregnancy”) or pelvic pain. There is also a risk of gonorrhea spreading into the bloodstream and causing fever, chills, blisters on the skin, or arthritis of the joints.
The surest way to avoid transmission of STDs is to abstain from sexual intercourse, or to be in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and is known to be uninfected.
Symptoms in Men:
Gonorrhea signs may never appear, or can appear within 1-30 days of infection. You might experience:
Symptoms in Women:
Most girls won't have any symptoms, so they won't know that they are infected. If you do have symptoms, you might notice:
- Burning or pain when peeing or defecating (pooping).
- Unusual white, yellow or green discharge (strange liquid) from your penis.
- Painful or swollen testicles (balls).
- Frequent peeing.
Causes and Risk factors:
- Burning or pain when peeing.
- Painful bowel movements.
- A lot more vaginal discharge that is sometimes yellow or bloody.
- Vaginal bleeding between periods.
- Abdominal (stomach) pain, lower back pain, pain during sex or a fever, which may mean that gonorrhea has become worse and turned into Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID).
Gonorrhea is caused by the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhea, the gonococcus. The bacteria grow in warm, moist areas of the body, including the tube that carries urine out of the body (urethra). In women, the bacteria may be found in the reproductive tract (which includes the fallopian tubes, uterus, and cervix). The bacteria can even grow in the eyes.
Gonorrhea is spread during vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected partner. A pregnant woman may pass the infection to her newborn during delivery.
Gonorrhea can be transmitted any time by a person who is infected with the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoea, whether or not symptoms are present. A person who is infected with gonorrhea is always contagious until he or she has been treated.
Having a gonorrhea infection once does not protect you from getting another infection in the future. A new exposure to gonorrhea will cause reinfection, even if you were previously treated and cured.
Several laboratory tests are available to diagnose gonorrhea. A doctor or nurse can obtain a sample for testing from the parts of the body likely to be infected (cervix, urethra, rectum, or throat) and send the sample to a laboratory for analysis.
Laboratory Test Include:
Gram stain is sensitive and specific for gonorrhea in men with urethral discharge; gram-negative intracellular diplococci typically are seen. Gram stain is much less accurate for infections of the cervix, pharynx, and rectum and is not recommended for diagnosis at these sites.
Culture is sensitive and specific, but because gonococci are fragile and fastidious, samples taken using a swab need to be rapidly plated on an appropriate medium (e.g., modified Thayer-Martin) and transported to the laboratory in a CO2-containing environment. Blood and joint fluid samples should be sent with notification to the lab or suspected gonococcal infection.
Treatment for gonorrhea generally involves taking antibiotics. Several antibiotics can successfully cure gonorrhea in adolescents and adults. However, drug-resistant strains of gonorrhea are increasing in many areas of the world.
- A single shot of ceftriaxone (Rocephin) 125 mg or a single dose of cefixime 400 mg taken by mouth are currently the recommended antibiotic treatment.
- Azithromycin (Zithromax) 2g in a single dose may be used for people who have severe allergic reactions to ceftriaxone, cefixime, or penicillin.
It is important to take all of the medication prescribed by your doctor to cure gonorrhea. Although medication will stop the infection, it will not repair any permanent damage caused by it. If you have gonorrhea, you should talk with all of your sexual partners, because they should get tested for gonorrhea, too, even if they do not have any gonorrhea symptoms. If you have gonorrhea, you should avoid sexual contact until you and your partner have been treated and cured.
Medicine and medications:
Penicillin, tetracycline, spectinomycin, erythromycin, cephalosporins, quinolones, Ceftriaxone, Cefixime, Cefpodoxime proxetil.
The following drugs and medications are in some way related to, or used in the treatment. This service should be used as a supplement to, and NOT a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners.
DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.