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Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea

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Published by MASII
notes on gonorrhea
notes on gonorrhea

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Published by: MASII on Jul 29, 2010
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05/12/2014

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I Definition

Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). It is a specific type of urethritis
(inflammation of urethra) practically always involves mucous membranes of the urethra,
resulting in a copious discharge of pus, it is more apparent in male than in female. Gonorrhea is
curable, common in young adults. Men have 20% and 50% in women chance in getting the
infection by sexual relations with infected person. If a pregnant woman has gonorrhea, she may
give the infection to her baby as the baby passes through the birth canal during delivery. This can
cause blindness, joint infection, or a life-threatening blood infection in the baby. Treatment of
gonorrhea as soon as it is detected in pregnant women will reduce the risk of these
complications. Pregnant women should consult a health care provider for appropriate
examination, testing, and treatment, as necessary.

II Causative Agent

Gonorrhea is caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae, a gram-negative coccus, 0.6-1.0 µm in
diameter, a bacterium that can grow and multiply easily in the warm, moist areas of the
reproductive tract, including the cervix (opening to the womb), uterus (womb), and fallopian
tubes (egg canals) in women, and in the urethra (urine canal) in women and men. The bacterium
can also grow in the mouth, throat, eyes, and anus.

III Transmission

Gonorrhea is spread through contact with the penis, vagina, mouth, or anus. It can also be spread from mother to new born through delivery. People who have been infected before may be infected again if they have sex with infected presons.

IV Pathogenesis

Pathogenesis of gonorrhea involves the attachment of the bacterium to nonciliated epithelial or mucosal cells via their pili (fimbriae) then penetrate to submucosal areas and produce lipopolysaccharide endotoxins; a toxin.

. Important characteristics of N. gonorrhoeae:
1. Gonococci are small Gram-diplococci which characteristically have flattened surfaces
between the adjacent individual cocci.
2. Major virulence mechanisms:
o
Pili are small hair-like protein projections from the cell which are important as
adherence structures.
o
Production of an IgAase.
o
Ability to scavenge iron.
o
LPS is important.
o
V Signs and Symptoms

Many men having the disease may have no symptoms (asymptomatic) at all, some also
have that appear two to five days after infection. In both men and women, signs and symptoms
are inflammation and erythema around the opening of the urethra. In men signs and symptoms
includes burning sensation when urinating, or purulent, white, yellow or green urethral
discharge. Some men have painful or swollen testicles.

In women, signs and symptoms are often mild but most women are asymptomatic. Initial
signs and symptoms includes painful or burning sensation when urinating, increased vaginal
discharges, or vaginal bleeding between periods. Women with gonorrhea are at risk of
developing serious complication for the infection like pelvic inflammation disease which leads to
infertility.

VI Control and Prevention

Controls rests on the better education about the disease, its results and effects. Antibiotics
can successfully cure gonorrhea in adolescent and adults. However, drug-resistant strains of
gonorrhea are increasing that causes treatment to become more difficult. Its important to take all
medication prescribed to cure gonorrhea. The most effective way to prevent gonorrhea is to
abstain from sexual intercourse, or to have a long term mutually monogamous relationship with a
partner who is tested uninfected. Use of latex condoms, used consistently and correctly can
prevent from transmission of the disease. Any symptoms can be a sign to stop having sex to
many sexual partners and see a doctor as soon as possible. If one is infected but treated he/she
must notify all recent sex partners so they may be aware. Preventions includes vaccines,
composed of gonococcal pili, were not protective. Chemoprophylaxis (administration of a
medication for the purpose of preventing disease or infection) can prevent neonatal gonococcal
conjunctivitis

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