What’s a word you don’t like hearing at the doctor’s office? Gonorrhea.
Gonorrhea – otherwise known as "the clap," a bacterial type of sexually transmitted disease – wins the title of the second most commonplace STD in the United States, according to the Center for Disease Control. In fact, it affects approximately 800,000 Americans a year. Additionally, approximately three quarters of affected individuals are between the ages of 15 and 29 years old.
Luckily, gonorrhea is a bacterial sexually transmitted disease. Unlike viral strains, it can be cured with early and effective treatment.
So, what's creating the recent buzz in the media? What exactly is causing such a stir than ever before? Well, the harmful and widespread bacteria is becoming more resistant to withstanding treatment. Yikes!
Well, there's good news.
Thanks to the CDC, more research has been conducted to address the growing concern and revamp the previously prevalent drug, initially developed in the 1930s. In recent headlines, pharmaceutical researchers say new treatments can potentially solve the problem:
"The clinical trial, funded and conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, included 401 infected men and women ages 15-60, who were given two different combinations of injectable and oral antibiotics widely available in the USA. Results showed a 100% rate of effectiveness in one combination of antibiotics (injectable gentamicin with oral azithromycin) and a 99.5% rate of success in the other (oral gemifloxacin with oral azithromycin). Both solutions cured infections in the throat and rectum 100% of the time."
Fortunately, the whizzes are working diligently towards a future with a lot less painful groins. Whew!
However, similar to most prescription drugs, this new concoction isn't perfect. A third of the gonorrhea patients in the clinical trial reported drug-related incidents including spells of nausea, diarrhea, or similar abdominal pain after taking the blend of azithromycin with either gentamicin or gemifloxacin. Gosh darn it.
In the meantime, there is a reasonable concern about the country's "gonorrhea problem," especially if you are a young American. However, with the conclusions of these new scientific developments in treatments, it's an optimistic path. Maybe, some day soon, the world will see a cure to the clap entirely! But until then…