While the gonorrhea virus was first discovered in 1879, it has been one of the highest sexually transmitted diseases because often there are no symptoms in the least. If one does develop symptoms they are mild and can be mistaken for other illnesses. The good news is that gonorrhea has been cured via several antibiotics. This does not mean the person could not get re-infected if they had unprotected sex with another person who carried the virus.
Generally, this STI hits the younger generation, those 15-24 more that those who are more mature. This may be linked to the advances in sexual education on the use of condoms to prevent diseases. Without treatment gonorrhea can lead to sterility in both sexes. If it gets into the bloodstream, it can cause death.
There are many bacterial infections that are cured with specific antibiotics. However, it seems like bacteria have a mind of their own and are possessed by demons. Once one drug eradicates a certain strain, the bacteria will mutate and re-create itself and become immune to the antibiotic. This is exactly what has happened in the UK, especially in Leeds. According to the BBC there has been an outbreak of drug-resistant gonorrhea.
Noel Tipon, CEO of British Condoms said “I cannot stress enough the important of sexual health and would urge everyone to be very vigilant, especially in these times of outbreak”
Let’s look at the numbers. At the time of this writing there have been a dozen confirmed cases in Leeds. There are four additional cases in other areas. These are the cases that have been diagnosed. As mentioned previously often there are no symptoms at all. It could be that several of these cases were caught ‘by accident’ when the individual went to a doctor for another illness. There is actually no way to predict exactly how many individuals currently carry this new bacterium. What is known for a fact is that there is no known antibiotic that can cure it today.
Should the population of the UK be anxious? They should be if they are sexually active with different partners. Health officials are proposing special clinics where individuals can be tested for this STI. In the meantime parents and friends should educate those young sexually active people to always use a condom. Other than abstinence, it is their only protection.