Gonorrhoea is a bacterial infection that causes discharges coming out from the genitalia. It is the third most common sexually transmitted infection in Malta, after chlamydia and genital warts. The disease usually spread via unprotected sexual activity.
This condition could pose serious health problems if left undiagnosed and untreated. But with early recognition of symptoms, accurate diagnosis, and prompt treatment, gonorrhoea is easily treatable.
Public Health England reports that 2016 saw a 12% decrease in gonorrhoea cases as compared to the previous year. There were 36,244 confirmed gonorrhoea cases during that time, mostly comprised of sexually-active people 25 years old and below.
Younger age groups are especially susceptible to catching gonorrhoea because they are more likely to change partners often due to engagement in casual sex.
As with other STIs, gonorrhoea may present with no symptoms at all. Almost 10% of men and 50% of women infected with this bacterial condition are asymptomatic. However, here are the symptoms to watch out for if you think you are at risk of contracting the disease:
The common symptoms between females and males are the yellowish discharge coming out of the genitalia and the burning sensation during peeing.
Neisseria gonorrhoea bacteria is the culprit behind gonorrhoea. It is a contagious form of bacteria that spreads through:
Contracting the disease before also predisposes you to a repeat infection.
Your doctor will typically prescribe an antibiotic course to treat your gonorrhoea. Antibiotics may either be taken in oral form or as an injection given in your thigh or buttocks. Sometimes, the injection will be given initially followed by an oral course of antibiotics to eradicate the bacteria completely.
Physicians are especially vigilant in prescribing antibiotics for gonorrhoea nowadays. This is due to the emergence of a new bacterial strain that causes “super-gonorrhoea” – an illness variation that doesn’t respond to conventional antibiotic treatment due to antibiotic resistance. Hence, it is important to discuss proper antibiotic use and possible alternative treatment options with your Mobidoctor physician.
Gonorrhoea in pregnancy
Gonorrhoea can cause serious problems for your baby’s health when left undiagnosed and untreated. Here are the possible complications your baby might catch once he/she gets the gonorrhoea infection from you:
Gonorrhoea may also cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), a condition that may cause a lot of damage to your reproductive organs. Your chances of getting an ectopic pregnancy (an egg getting fertilised outside your womb) also rises in conjunction with PID and gonorrhoea. Infertility risks become higher as well.
Mobidoctor physicians can diagnose your gonorrhoea at any time during your pregnancy. They can safely provide medications to ensure that your baby doesn’t contract the bacteria in-utero.
See your doctor right away if you think you’re at risk for gonorrhoea and you’re pregnant at the same time. The earlier the infection is caught, the better prognosis it has for you and your unborn child.