We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Shutterstock/Kateryna Kon

Super-gonorrhoea is a thing in England and it could become untreatable

The outbreak was first seen in Leeds.

GONORRHOEA, A COMMON sexually-transmitted infection could become an untreatable disease, BBC News reports today.

Health editor James Gallagher reports on a letter – seen by the broadcaster – warning all GPs and pharmacists in England about the rise of ‘super-gonorrhoea’.

‘Super-gonorrhoea’ is the term being used for a strain of the infection which is growing resistance to antibiotics. It is spread by unprotected vaginal, oral and anal sex.

In the note, the country’s chief medical officer Sally Davies asked all doctors and pharmacists to ensure they are prescribing the correct drugs as treatment for the STI.

She is worried that some patients who contracted super-gonorrhoea during an outbreak in Leeds earlier this year were not give the two antibiotics they needed to clear the infection.

“Gonorrhoea is at risk of becoming an untreatable disease due to the continuing emergence of antimicrobial resistance,” she said.

Gonorrhoea has rapidly acquired resistance to new antibiotics, leaving few alternatives to the current recommendations. It is therefore extremely important that suboptimal treatment does not occur.

Earlier this year, a BBC investigation found that some online pharmacy outlets were dispensing just one oral antibiotic which is less effective.

March outbreak

The super-resistant strain was first spotted in the north of England in March. Cases were treated in Leeds and then in Oldham, Macclesfield and Scunthorpe.

According to the Independent, all the cases reported have been transmitted through heterosexual intercourse.

About 30,000 people were diagnosed with gonorrhoea in 2013 in England. In the same year in Ireland, there were 1,077 cases reported. The worst affected areas were Dublin, Wicklow and Kildare.

Gonorrhoea can lead to infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease and other health problems. Its symptoms include thick green or yellow discharge, urinating and bleeding between periods for women. However, there are often no symptoms.

A day in an STI clinic: Peter never got tested because ‘he only sleeps with pretty girls’

How many times a week? Sex in Ireland by the numbers

Findom in Dublin: The Irish men who are turned on by women spending their money

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.