Gonorrhea Infection, When It Hits You!
Gonorrhea infection, or commonly known “the clap”, is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. Every one, regardless of age, who is sexually active can practically acquire a gonorrhea infection. Caused by the bacterium Neisseria Gonorrhoeae, it can infect almost every part of the body including the genitals, the anus, the eyes, the throat, the joints and the heart valves. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) estimates a yearly new infection rate of 820,000 in the United States.
Gonorrhea infection is transmitted during sex (vaginal, oral, anal) and may or may not show any symptoms. While most men affected by gonorrhea may have some burning during urination (dysuria) or urethral discharge, many women may not show any symptoms. Gonorrhea infection used to be very easy to treat with antibiotics; recently, new drug resistant “super bugs” have made treatment more complicated and gonorrhea to become a STD of concern. Overall, if detected and treated, gonorrhea remains a treatable STD; if gonorrhea goes undetected for a prolonged period of time, it may spread and cause infections to the urogenital tract of men and women, as well as affecting the joints and heart valves causing more serious complications. Furthermore, if a woman infected with gonorrhea gives birth to a baby, there is a high risk of gonorrhea infection during delivery.
It is also very important to note that if a person has been infected with gonorrhea, and his/hers gonorrhea has been treated successfully, they are still at risk of acquiring a new infection if having sex with another infected person: prior gonorrhea infections do not provide immunity against new infections with gonorrhea!!!
Wondering if You Should Be Tested for Gonorrhea Infection?
Every sexually active man or woman with urogenital symptoms should be tested for gonorrhea infection. If you are infected with another STD, you need to be tested for gonorrhea as well.
Diagnosis of gonorrhea infection is usually easily done with urine analysis. If gonorrhea infection is suspected in the oral or anal areas, a swab can help to collect samples for analysis. A swab can also be used to collect samples from a man’s urethra or a women’s vaginal surface.
One important fact to keep in mind is that you or your partner need to be tested and treated for possible gonorrhea infection if one of you has a diagnosis of gonorrhea!
You Have Been Tested Positive, and Need Treatment?
The treatment of gonorrhea is done with the right antibiotics. More recently, drug-resistant strains of gonorrhea have made the treatment more difficult and complicated(Read More Here). If you or your partner continue having symptoms a few days after starting the antibiotics, you should go back to your health care professional for further tests and a different treatment options.
How Can I Prevent Gonorrhea Infection?
Latex condoms, if used regularly, may help to reduce the risk of gonorrhea infections. The only certain way to avoid gonorrhea infection is either to abstain from sexual activity or be in a long-term, monogamous relationship with a healthy partner.
Quick Facts: Risks and Complications of Gonorrhea Infection
- If left untreated, gonorrhea may affect every aspect of the urogenital tract.
- If left untreated, gonorrhea may affect the joints and heart valves.
- If undetected, gonorrhea may be transmitted during child birth causing serious infections to the child.
- Gonorrhea infection increase the risk of getting infected with other STDs.
- Gonorrhea infection increases the risk of acquiring HIV.
Come and See us…
If you are noticing any of the above mentioned symptoms, it is highly advisable to see a health care professional for testing and treatment. Specializing in urology, STDs like gonorrhea belong to the commonly treated diseases in our facility. During the last 30+ years of my practice, I have seen and treated many cases of gonorrhea. Especially now with the “super bugs”, timely diagnosis and the right treatment is crucial for successful healing. If you suspect a gonorrhea infection, please do not wait! Come and see me for diagnosis and the right treatment.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]