Also called: The clap
Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease. It is most common in young adults. The bacteria that cause gonorrhea can infect the genital tract, mouth, or anus. You can get gonorrhea during vaginal, oral, or anal sex with an infected partner. A pregnant woman can pass it to her baby during childbirth.
Gonorrhea does not always cause symptoms. In men, gonorrhea can cause pain when urinating and discharge from the penis. If untreated, it can cause problems with the prostate and testicles.
In women, the early symptoms of gonorrhea often are mild. Later, it can cause bleeding between periods, pain when urinating, and increased discharge from the vagina. If untreated, it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, which causes problems with pregnancy and infertility.
Your health care provider will diagnose gonorrhea with lab tests. Treatment is with antibiotics. Treating gonorrhea is becoming more difficult because drug-resistant strains are increasing. Correct usage of latex condoms greatly reduces, but does not eliminate, the risk of catching or spreading gonorrhea.
NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
If you are pregnant, an infection can be more than just a problem for you. Some infections can be dangerous to your baby. You can help yourself avoid infections:
- Don’t eat raw or undercooked meat
- Don’t share food or drinks with other people
- Wash your hands frequently
- Don’t empty cat litter. Cats can transmit toxoplasmosis.
You may need to take medicines or get a vaccine to prevent an infection in your baby. For example, you may need to take antibiotics if you develop an infection with group B strep, or take medicines if you have genital herpes. Only some medicines and vaccines are safe during pregnancy. Ask your health care provider about how best to protect you and your baby.