A new untreatable form of gonorrhea is infecting people all over the world. The new strain of "super gonorrhea" is mainly spread by oral sex, and there is no treatment.
The new strain of gonorrhea developed after doctors misdiagnosed gonorrhea for strep throat and over prescribed antibiotics. Researchers say the bacteria has gotten smarter and adapted quickly to resist standard treatment.
The super strain of gonorrhea is resistant to all antibiotics, including the last line of defense -- azthromycin (AZT) and ceftriaxone antibiotics.
Gonorrhea usually infects 78 million people per year. It commonly affects the genitals, rectum and throat.
Patients infected with gonorrhea usually have no symptoms. But if left untreated, gonorrhea can cause abdominal and genital pain and a smelly discharge from the genitals. Also common is fever, frequent urge to urinate, irregular menstruation, or sore throat and difficulty swallowing.
Gonorrhea is the 2nd most commonly spread STD in America. It can increase the risk of HIV infection and can be spread from mother to child during childbirth.
The NY Daily News reports that 3 new antibiotics are in the pipeline, but it is not known when those drugs will reach the market.
The standard cautions still apply: use condoms and gels, or practice abstinence if you are not married.