Gonorrhea? Isn’t that the old school venereal disease called “the clap?”
You might recall learning about gonorrhea in health class as the STD linked to military veterans after they returned home from war. Yes, that’s gonorrhea. But don’t be fooled into thinking that gonorrhea’s old school rep belongs in the past, affecting only soldiers, sailors and marines, or older folks from a different generation. Gonorrhea is the second most common STD in the United States today, after chlamydia, with 700,000 new cases detected each year and 106 million cases reported annually worldwide. You may be interested to know that we’ve seen a rise in the number of gonorrhea cases at My Health Options in the past 6 months, and we screen and treat only those patients who are age 25 and younger. Gonorrhea is making a comeback and it’s stronger than ever.
Good news is that gonorrhea is curable when treated with antibiotics, and you can’t get it from a dirty toilet seat or shaking hands; bad news is that if you are sexually active, you are at risk.The infection is caused by bacteria which is spread during vaginal, oral or anal sex from partner to partner. Women can also pass gonorrhea on to their babies during childbirth. Newborns can acquire severe health problems from gonorrhea such as: blindness, arthritis of the joints, meningitis, and in rare cases, a life-threatening blood disease.
Typically, gonorrhea has little or no symptoms in the early stages of the disease, especially in women. Even without symptoms, you can still be infected and transfer the disease to someone else during sex. If you’ve had unprotected sex, and experience any of the following symptoms, be sure to get tested right away.
Women may experience:
- Unusual discharge or drip from the vagina.
- Burning and pain when they urinate
- If gonorrhea spreads to the reproductive organs (like the fallopian tubes) a woman may have pain in the abdomen or lower back; pain during sex; fever; or bleeding between her periods.
Men may experience:
- Discharge or drip from the penis
- Burning when they urinate
Women run the risk of developing PID (pelvic inflammatory disease) if gonorrhea is untreated and allowed to progress. PID is a serious illness which can cause severe abdominal cramping, fever, pain during intercourse and result in ectopic pregnancy or infertility.
Men may devolop a painful condition in the testicles, which in rare cases may prevent them from fathering children.
Bottom line is, if you’re having unprotected sex, even oral sex, do yourself a favor and get tested. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed here, then pick it up and get screened now! We’ll test you for free if you’re between the ages of 14 – 25. Click on the link to make an appointment now on the My Health Options website. Old school, new school, when it comes to STDs like gonorrhea and chlamydia, the risks are the same. GYT!
Free, Confidential Gonorrhea Testing in Camden County at My Health Options. 856.795.0758