Gonorrhoea is a common sexually transmitted disease (STD) which affects millions of men and women all over the world. It is caused due to infection with the bacteria known as neisseria gonorrhoeae. These bacteria grow and multiply rapidly in the warm, moist areas of the reproductive tract of men (urethra) and women such as the cervix (the opening to the womb), uterus (the womb), fallopian tubes (the tube that carries eggs to the womb, and urethra). Besides this, the bacteria can grow and multiply in the mouth, throat, eyes, and anus.
Gonorrhoea is transmitted from one person to other by sexual (penal, vaginal, oral, or anal) or close physical contact. Transmission of the disease from a mother to her baby during a vaginal delivery can also occur. Anyone who is sexually active (that is has oral, anal or genital sex) can get infected with gonorrhoea. People with multiple sexual partners are at higher risk of getting the infection as each additional sexual partner increases your risk of being exposed to the infection. The signs and symptoms of gonorrhoea are more evident and common in men than women.
Gonorrhoea can be cured with treatment and is preventable. Antibiotics are used for treatment of the infection. Treatment can cure the infection but any permanent damage that is caused by the infection such as damage the fallopian tubes in women and scarring inside the urethra in women is not repaired with antibiotic treatment. If the infection is not treated, it can lead to serious complications, such as pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. You can prevent infection by using safer sex practices, seeking regular medical care, and avoiding high risk sexual behaviour such as having multiple sexual partners and becoming sexually active at a young age.
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