Gonorrhea Symptoms in Singapore: Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted illness. It causes pain with urination and other symptoms. It is treatable, but if untreated can lead to sterility.
The symptoms of gonorrhea usually appear about 4-6 days after exposure to the bacteria, although it may be as long as two weeks. The symptoms are similar to those of chlamydia.
For women, there are often no symptoms. Half or more of all women who have gonorrhea have no symptoms at all. If women do have symptoms, there are a variety of possible symptoms of gonorrhea. There may be pelvic or lower abdominal pain. Many women have vaginal discharge, which is usually yellow or yellowish-green. There may be pain with sexual intercourse, and the woman’s external genitalia may be swollen or painful. Pain or a burning sensation with urination, and the urge to urinate more frequently than usual, are also common symptoms of gonorrhea. Women may experience menstrual irregularities such as bleeding between periods. Sometimes, there are general symptoms of illness, such as a fever.
For men, the most common symptom is discharge from the urethra (the tube that ends at the tip of the penis). There is often also a burning sensation during urination, and the urge to urinate more frequently than usual. Again, many men have no symptoms at all from gonorrhea, although the lack of symptoms is less common in men than in women.
The Neisseria gonorrhoeae bacteria can also infect the throat. This type of gonorrhea is transmitted through oral sex, almost always when it’s performed on a man. 90% of people with gonorrhea of the throat have no symptoms, but the remaining 10% have a sore or itchy throat and may have trouble swallowing.
Additionally, the bacteria can infect the anus, where they are transmitted through anal sex. Gonorrhea of the anus may result in discharge from the anus, that’s yellow or yellowish-green and looks like pus. The anus may itch, and bowel movements may be painful.
If gonorrhea is left untreated, it may progress to more severe forms of disease. In women, untreated gonorrhea may lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, or PID. In women with PID, the infection is spread throughout the pelvic organs, including the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes (the tubes that carry the eggs from the ovaries to the uterus). This can lead to infertility, or the inability to become pregnant, which is often permanent even after treatment of the gonorrhea. While many young, sexually active women are not interested in becoming pregnant immediately, many do wish to have children later in life. Untreated gonorrhea could make this impossible.
For men, untreated gonorrhea may lead to epididymitis. In this condition, the infection spreads to the epididymis, which is a small organ located in the scrotum next to each of the testes. This organ houses sperm, so the damage caused by epididymitis may also lead to infertility.
In either gender, in more severe cases, untreated gonorrhea may spread beyond the local organs into the rest of the body. This is called disseminated gonococcal infection, or DGI. Its most common symptoms are skin and joint problems. If treated, it usually resolves, but if it’s left untreated for a period of time, permanent joint damage can result. In rare cases, DGI can cause severe problems such as endocarditis, a potentially fatal infection of the inside of the heart, or meningitis, another potentially fatal or disabling infection of the coverings around the brain and spinal cord. Meningitis may lead to severe problems, including blindness, deafness, paralysis, or death. Treatment of late-stage gonorrheal meningitis can get rid of the bacteria, but the damage to the nervous system is often permanent.
If a pregnant woman has gonorrhea, there is a higher risk of premature labor (having the baby too early, which is dangerous for the baby’s health), and also stillbirth (the baby dying before being born). The mother may transmit the bacteria to her newborn during birth. The bacteria may cause a variety of health problems in the baby, including joint problems. The bacteria may also enter the eyes of the baby and cause a severe infection that leads to blindness. Doctors protect the baby against gonorrhea in Singapore by placing antibiotic eyedrops into the eyes of every baby immediately after birth. This is done for all babies, not just those whose mothers have tested positive for gonorrhea, just in case the mother has been exposed to gonorrhea and doesn’t know it or doesn’t want to admit it. The eyedrops will not hurt the baby even if there’s no gonorrhea infection in the mother’s vagina, so it makes sense to do this for every baby.