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Gonorrhea

A close-up illustration of the Gonorrhea bacteria on a petri dish
Illustration of the Gonorrhea bacteria

What goes wrong

Problems can occur 1-14 days after catching the infection or sometimes weeks or months later. In 10% men and 50 % women there are no symptoms at all.

In women

  • Greenish or watery discharge from the vagina.
  • Pain on passing urine.
  • Lower abdominal pain.
  • Irregular bleeding.

In men

  • Discharge from penis.
  • Pain on passing urine.
  • Pain in the testicles.
  • Inflammation of the foreskin.

If it is not treated, it may block up your tubes and stop you having babies later on in life.

It's caused by

Having sex - including oral sex (which may give you a sore throat) and anal sex - with someone who's got the gonorrhea bacteria. The bacteria can hide in the cells of the cervix, the urethra (the tube you pee out of), the anus or the throat and eyes.

How not to get it

First - always use a condom. If you are a girl don't sleep with any bloke who has a weeping willie. If you are a bloke don't sleep with a girl who has any kind of funny discharge. But as you can't always tell about either of these things - it is going to be a condom!

What to do if you do get it

Head for the doctors asp - or your local genito-urinary clinic (GUM). You, and the person you have beens sleeping with,  both need treatment with antibiotics and it may be necessary to contact previous sexual partners to get them treated too. You can get more advice at www.fpa.org.uk. Also go to www.youthhealthtalk.org for further information

Gonorrhea is also called the clap