Monday, January 3, 2011

Gonorhea - Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and Prevention

Gonorrhea is a bacterial infection, that not only infects the genital but also non-genital orifices. Gonorrhea spreads in the reproductive system, and also via the bloodstream and infects other body parts.

Symptoms of Gonorhea
Over 50% of infected women have no symptoms, especially in the early stages of the infection. Symptoms are similar in men and women, a few are distinct to their gender. Men experience painful urination and heavy secretions, while women have abnormal bleeding and little discharge. Untreated gonorrhea increases the risk of pelvic inflammatory diseases and infertility-related conditions.

Symptoms in men:-
• Yellow, green, or white discharge from the penis
• Testicular swelling and/or pain
• Burning during urination

Symptoms in women:-
• Yellow, green, or white vaginal discharge
• Pain or burning during urination
• Pain in the pelvic region
• Conjunctivitis (pink-eye)
• Irregular bleeding (between periods)
• Vulvitis (swelling of the vulva)
• Spotting after intercourse

Cause of Gonorrhea:-
Gonorrhea is caused by the growth and propagation of the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The disease can survive in the eye, rectum, mouth, penis, throat, or vagina. This means that it can be transmitted through any variety of sexual contact.

Who is the most effected from  Gonorrhea ?
Any sexually active person can become infected with gonorrhea. Rates of infection are maximum among youth and young adults between the ages of 15 and 29. Those who have been diagnosed with and treated for gonorrhea in the past have no resistance to the bacteria.

Diagnosis of Gonorrhea
Testing for gonorrhea is done by swabbing the infected site (rectum, throat, cervix) and identifying the bacteria in the laboratory either through culturing of the material from the swab (growing the bacteria) or identification of the genetic material from the bacteria. Newer tests to diagnose gonorrhea involve the use of DNA probes or amplification techniques (for example, polymerase chain reaction, or PCR) to identify the genetic material of the bacteria. These tests are more expensive than cultures but typically yield more rapid results.

Treatment of Gonorrhea
In the past, the treatment of uncomplicated gonorrhea was fairly simple. A single injection of penicillin cured almost every infected person.Uncomplicated gonococcal infections of the cervix, urethra, and rectum, are usually treated by a single injection of ceftriaxone intramuscularly or by 400mg of cefixime (Suprax) in a single oral dose. For uncomplicated gonococcal infections of the pharynx, the recommended treatment is 125 mg of ceftriaxone in a single IM dose.

Alternative regimens for uncomplicated gonococcal infections of the cervix, urethra, and rectum are 2 g of spectinomycin in nonpregnant women (not available in the United States) in a single IM dose or single doses of cephalosporins (ceftizoxime, 500 mg IM; or cefoxitin, 2 g IM, administered with probenecid (Benemid), 1 g orally; or cefotaxime, 500 mg IM).

It is important to note that doxycycline, one of the recommended drugs for treatment of PID, is not recommended for use in pregnant women.

Prevention of Gonorrhea Disese:-
Gonorrhea is one of the easier STDs to prevent because the bacterium that causes the infection can survive only under certain conditions. The use of condoms protects against gonorrhea infection. Since the organism can live in the throat, condoms should be used during oral-genital contact as well.