Gonorrhea, also known as the "dose", "clap", and "drip", is a bacterial infection caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. This bacteria can live and multiple in areas of the body like; the cervix (opening of the womb), the uterus (womb), the fallopian tube (egg canals), the urethra (urine canal), the mouth, the throat, the anus, and eyes.
The majority of people who have Gonorrhea do not show any symptom. For individuals who do have symptoms, they usual appear 2 to 5 days after infection but could take as long as a 30 for some individuals. Women who have symptoms tend to mistake them for a bladder infection due to their non specific nature.
Female symptoms include:
- Burning with urination
- Increased vaginal discharge
- Vaginal bleeding between periods
Male symptoms include:
- Burning with urination
- White, yellow, or green discharge from the penis
- Swollen testicles
According to the Center for Disease Control, gonorrhea is a very common infectious disease and has an estimated yearly infection rate of more than 700,000 persons in the U.S. Only about half of these infections are reported and in 2004, 330,132 cases of gonorrhea were reported to CDC.
Gonorrhea can be spread through any contact with an infected penis, mouth, anus, or vagina. Bodily fluids are not necessary to contract an infection. For example, ejaculation is not required to transfer the bacteria to a partner.
Gonorrhea is diagnosed from a urine test or a sample taken from the cervix, urethra, rectum, or
throat. Healthcare professionals analyze the specimens for bacteria to determine whether an
individual has the bacterial infection.
Local Testing Available at:
- Eastern Illinois University Health Service: Swab Test Only Available for Men - $30
- Phone: (217)581-3013
- Coles County Health Department: Urine Sample for Men - $15 - Swab Test for Women - $25
- 825 18th Street, Charleston, IL 61920
- Phone: (217) 348-0530 Fax: (217) 348-5322
- Champaign-Urbana Public Health Department: Swab Test for Men and Women -
Free with suggested $20 donation
- 710 N Neil Street, Champaign, IL 61820
- Phone: (217) 352-7961
Some cases of Gonorrhea can be treated through antibiotics, but there are a increasing number of drug resistant strains of Gonorrhea. It is important to note, if you are being treated for gonorrhea your partner should also be tested and treated to avoid re-infection.
The only 100% effective way to prevent sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea is to abstain from sexual activity where there is a transmission of bodily fluids such as oral, anal, and vaginal sex. If you choose to be sexually active, being in a monogamous relationship with a partner who is not infected significantly reduces your risk of infection. In addition, reducing your number of sexual partners can help to reduce your risk. Latex condoms, when used consistently and correctly, may reduce the risk of a Gonorrheal infection.