There is a New Strain of Gonorrhea on the Loose


Recently a new strain of the sexually transmitted infection Gonorrhea has been found in patients in the United States as well as Japan and the Philippines according to the New York Times. What adds to the concern about this strain of Gonorrhea is that is seems to be resistant to the antibiotics normally used to treat sexually transmitted infections.

ABC news report that the new strain of Gonorrhea, also known as Neisseria gonorrhoeae, has genetically mutated to be resistant to cephalosporins, which is the only class of antibiotic still successful in treating Gonorrhea.

Gonorrhea is spread through sexual contact, oral, anal, penile-vaginal and through childbirth to the baby if the mother is infected. There are currently an estimated 700,000 cases in the U.S. per year. Symptom include painful or burning urination, and penile, vagina, or anal discharge. If left untreated it can cause fertility problems, and infection to other areas of the body.

This new strain of Gonorrhea is now classified as one of the “superbugs” and rates right up there with MRSA. The one antibiotic that has been shown to treat it is much more expensive than previous treatments, with the average being $7.00 per pill to $1.00 previously.

This news reinforces the need for people to get tested for sexually transmitted infections, use condoms and talk to sexual partners about testing and sexual health issues. Sexually transmitted diseases are a public health problem and should be treated as such. As new strains of sexually transmitted infections continue to develop it is important that science and health care stay one step ahead of them by developing new testing and treatment methods. As individuals we need to stay ahead of them as well by having good sexual health practices and making sure our partners do the same.



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