While you could have gonorrhea and live with it without knowing, there are some long-term side-effect if it goes untreated. In females it can spread into the reproductive tract and produce issues with the uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries. This is called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). This causes severe pain and can permanently damage the reproductive organs, resulting in the prevention of pregnancy or an ectopic pregnancy. Of course, if you are carrying gonorrhea during childbirth it may be passes to the newborn during delivery.
Men who have gonorrhea and go untreated may experience permanent scarring of the urethra. They may also develop a painful abscess in the interior of the penis. Gonorrhea can even cause men to become sterile or have a lower sperm count. When gonorrhea infection spreads to the bloodstream, both men and women can experience arthritis, heart valve damage, or inflammation of the lining of the brain or spinal cord. These are rare but serious conditions.
Gonorrhea, commonly referred to as the clap, is a sexually transmitted infection STI. It is considered very common and is diagnosed more than 3 million times per year in the United States. It’s typically spread by sexual contact. Fortunately, it is treatable with antibiotics.
Gonorrhea symptoms include the following
- More frequent urination or the urge to urinate
- Painful sensation when urinating
- The penis may become red and swollen near the urinary meatus
- Abnormal discharge or (white, green, yellow) fluid from the penis or vaginal area
- Some men may experience testicular pain and swelling
- Some women may experience lower abdominal pain
- Sore throat that won’t go away
- Heavier period or excessive spotting
- Women may also experience a fever
- In some cases, there are no symptoms
Learn more on our Gonorrhea page.
If you are dealing with any of the issues above or suspect you may have been exposed, you can obtain safe, secure and discreet testing supplies from myLAB Box. Thankfully with advances in diagnosis and treatment, you can have gonorrhea cleared up within a few days or at the longest several weeks.
The symptoms of gonorrhea can certainly make you uncomfortable, but can often be overlooked, especially since gonorrhea doesn’t always produce symptoms. This can contribute to the passing of STIs inadvertently when partners don’t realize they’ve been exposed.
Regular STI testing like what’s offered through myLAB Box can be obtained and the results can provide diagnosis or peace of mind. After exposure symptoms can begin to manifest in a period of 1 to 10 days. Symptoms are generally more evident in men, but women don’t always realize they are carrying this STI.
If you think you may have gonorrhea or have been exposed to it, you should avoid any sexual activity and consider getting tested immediately. myLAB Box offers a complete line of STD/STI testing materials. These can be performed in the comfort of your own home.
If you need to see a doctor after receiving results, be prepared to:
- Detail your symptoms
- Discuss your sexual history
- Provide the contact info for previous sexual partners so that the doctor can contact them anonymously on your behalf
If you do have gonorrhea please contact your sexual partner(s), and let them know they should be tested immediately. You should refrain from any further sexual activity until your healthcare provider has given clearance.