Gonorrhoea is a sexually transmitted disease caused by Neiserria gonorrhoeae, a gram negative diplococcus. It is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases all over the world, next to Chlamydia.
Gonorrhoea is transmitted through sexual contact with an infected individual, either symptomatic or carrier. Many people tend to be carriers of gonorrhea without symptoms and manifestations of the disease. Despite this, these people are still capable of transmitting it. In fact, according to researches, people with gonorrhea acquired the disease from carrier individuals rather than from symptomatic patients. Symptomatic individuals tend not to know they are infected until signs and symptoms appear.
Adolescents and young adults have the highest risk for acquiring gonorrhoea with the highest rates among people between 20 to 24 years old.
Gonorrhoea involves two types: local and systemic. Gonorrhoea symptoms depend on the type of gonorrhea the patient has. In local gonorrhea, the symptoms are localized in the reproductive tract, rectum and pharynx. For systemic gonorrhea, it affects major organs in the body leading to meningitis, polyarthritis, endocarditis, dermatitis and bacteremia.
Local Gonorrhoea symptoms include:
Gonorrhoea testing involves painless procedures such as urine collection for gonorrhea test. Throat and anal swabs can also be taken for detecting the bacteria in those areas. Results for gonorrhea tests are available within 3 days.
Gonorrhoea infection does not provide life-long immunity for the disease so re-infection is possible when sexual practices are not improved. Treatment involves taking a course of antibiotics that are prescribed in clinics.
When Gonorrhea is not treated immediately, it may cause infertility and ectopic pregnancy because of possible complication of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.
Prevention of gonorrhea is more effective in managing the disease than treating it. Prevention includes safer sex practices such as avoid multiple sex partners, using barrier methods such as condom, knowing the person fully before engaging in intimate contact and practicing over-all genital hygiene. Gonorrhea is an STD that is highly preventable.