Health & Fitness

Gonorrhoea warning as cases surge by 21% – the six signs to look out for

HEALTH chiefs say there is a “worrying” surge of gonorrhoea cases in England.

The UK Health Security Agency warned “the clap” is up 21 per cent compared to before Covid – to record levels.

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An illustration of Neisseria gonorrhoeae[/caption]

There were 56,327 positive tests between January and September last year, compared to 46,541 in 2019, which broke the record at the time.

Many people never get symptoms of the sexually transmitted infection.

Experts fear the bug – spread by skin or mouth contact – is evolving to beat antibiotics.

NHS sexual health doctor Dr John White said: “This is the latest in a worrying trend pointing to skyrocketing sexually transmitted infection rates.

“Evidence shows that gonorrhoea of the throat is prevalent in the UK.

“This type is asymptomatic, meaning many people can be unaware they have it and unwittingly pass it on.”

Under-25s are at highest risk because they have more lovers.

Dr Thomas Waite, the government’s deputy chief medical officer, said: “Having safe sex and getting tested regularly is important to keep you and your partners safe.”

The 6 signs of gonorrhoea

1. Painful to urinate

Both men and women who have contracted gonorrhoea may find it painful to pass urine.

In most people it takes a couple of weeks for symptoms to emerge although it can take a few months longer in some cases.

Men and women are likely to feel a burning sensation when peeing.

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It’s likely you’ll find it painful to urinate if you have gonorrhoea[/caption]

2. Discharge

While symptoms vary from person to person, both men and women may experience discharge.

In women this is likely to be watery or off colour vaginal discharge.

Men could experience discharge from the penis, this could be white, yellow or green.

3. Stomach pains

This is a symptom that is just present in females and is a more unusual side effect of gonorrhoea.

The NHS states that women who have the infection may experience a pain or tenderness in the lower abdominal area.

4. Disruption to your cycle

Again, another symptom found just in women is a disruption to your menstrual cycle.

This could mean that your bleeding becomes heavier, or you could start to bleed between periods.

The NHS states that you could also bleed after sex, but said this is less common.

What is gonorrhoea?

The bacterial infection spreads through all forms of unprotected sex, as well as by sharing unwashed or unprotected sex toys.

According to the NHS, the bacteria which causes gonorrhoea can sometimes infect your throat and eyes, as well as the more common locations of the cervix, urethra and rectum.

Pregnant women can pass the infection on to their baby, which can cause blindness if it isn’t treated in time.

But the bacteria which causes gonorrhoea can’t survive outside of the human body for long.

This means it doesn’t spread by kissing, hugging or sharing cutlery, towels or toilet seats.

5. Inflammation

This symptom is seen only in men and can be uncomfortable.

The NHS states that men who have contracted gonorrhoea may experience swelling or inflammation of the foreskin.

6. Tenderness

Men may also experience pain or tenderness in the testicle.

The NHS says that this is a rare symptom in men.

Source of data and images: thesun

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