Gonorrhoea, also referred as “the clap” is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae, also called as Gonococcus. In United States, the incidence of Gonorrhea is second to Chlamydia among the sexually transmitted diseases (STD). If Gonorrhea is not treated, it can spread to the different body parts including the heart valves and joints. It is not spread through sharing bathrooms or toilets.
Signs and Symptoms
Some people are asymptomatic or no presented symptoms for life time in 30% to 60% of infected people.
In males, symptoms of gonorrhea include penile yellowish discharge with painful, frequent urination. The symptoms develop after 2 to 30 days of infection. Only a little percentage in men is asymptomatic. The symptoms may spread to the seminal vesicles, prostate and epididymis which usually cause fever and pain. Untreated gonorrhea may lead to sterility. The common presentation of men having gonorrhea is pain upon urination, copious, thick, and urethral pus discharge. The urethral meatus is also reddened upon examination. Ascending infection may happen involving the testicles, epididymis and prostate gland. Swelling and scrotal pain are the symptoms for this kind of infection.
In females, gonorrhea is sometimes asymptomatic or too mild to be ignored. Women usually complains of dysuria or difficulty in urination, vaginal discharge, projectile urination, menstrual bleeding but not in the cycle, or bleeding after intercourse. The cervix may appear normal or with inflammation with pus. Early symptoms include vaginal discharge, lower abdomen discomfort, genital irritation, abnormal bleeding and dysuria. Untreated gonorrhea in women may spread to the fallopian tubes, uterus and ovaries causing PID or pelvic inflammatory disease.
Gonorrhea is caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. It is transmitted through oral, vaginal and anal sex. Transmission is rare with the use of safe sex. The period of incubation is two to thirty days with symptoms appearing in the 4th to 6thday after the infection. Men having sex with men have a higher risk though getting it from infected women through vaginal sex is also high with 20% risk. Women have 60% to 80% risk having vaginal sex with an infected man. Infected pregnant mothers can transmit the disease to their newborn. The condition is called opthalmia neonatorum.
Antibiotics are used to treat gonorrhea which includes:
· 2g amoxicillin plus 1g probenecid orally
· 2 to 3g ampicillin plus 1g probenecid orally
· 2g azithromycin orally
· 400mg cefixime orally
· 500 mg cefotaxime by intramascular injection
· 2g cefoxitin by intramascular injection plus 1g probenecid orally
· 400mg cefpodoxime orally
· 125 to 250 mg ceftriaxone by intramuscular injection
· 500 ciprofloxacin orally
· 250mg levofloxacin orally
· 400mg ofloxacin orally
· 2g spectinomycin by intramuscular injection
Neiserria gonorrhea has high resistance in tetracyclines all over the world. Tetracyclines are now considered as infective against gonorrhea. In pregnant women, flouroquinolones like levofloxacin, ciprofloxacin and ofloxacin are not to be use. It is important to check your sexual partner for gonorrhea to prevent spread and from being reinfected. If you are infected with both gonorrhea and Chlamydia, the doctor will prescribe azithromycin and doxycyline as treatment for both diseases.