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Symptoms of Gonorrhea

Symptoms of Gonorrhea: Introduction

Symptoms of gonorrhea infection can vary among individuals. It is not unusual for both men and women with gonorrhea to have very mild symptoms or no symptoms at all in the early stage of the disease. However, serious permanent damage to the reproductive tissues, infertility and other complications can occur even in the absence of symptoms.

Symptoms of gonorrhea generally begin to occur about two to five days and up to about 30 days after exposure to the disease through sexual contact. In some people, early symptoms may be mild enough not to be noticed. Symptoms of gonorrhea infection in both sexes include fever and pain or burning with urination (dysuria).

Men may experience frequent urination (frequency) and a discharge from the penis that is cloudy and filled with pus. If left untreated, the infection can spread farther into the male urinary and reproductive system and lead to prostatitis and epididymitis, an inflammation of the prostate gland. This can result in testicular pain and male infertility if not treated promptly.

Another complication of untreated gonorrhea in men is urethral stricture due to the development of scar tissue in the urethra. Urethral stricture is painful and can make urination difficult.

Women with gonorrhea may experience an unusual, cloudy vaginal discharge, lower abdominal pain, and vaginal bleeding not associated with the menstrual cycle. vaginal bleeding can also occur after sexual intercourse.

Complications of untreated gonorrhea in women include pelvic inflammatory disease, which can scar the fallopian tubes and lead to infertility and ectopic pregnancy, a life-threatening condition. Symptoms of pelvic inflammatory disease include severe abdominal pain or cramps, vomiting and fever. A gonorrhea infection can also spread to the abdomen forming an abscess and possibly result in peritonitis.

For both sexes, having a gonorrhea infection also puts a person at greater risk for contracting HIV. An untreated gonorrhea infection can also spread into the bloodstream and cause inflammation of other areas of the body.

Additional symptoms occur if gonorrhea has infected the anus or throat (gonococcal pharyngitis). Symptoms include anal itching, a cloudy discharge from the anus, bloody stool and painful bowel movements. There may be no symptoms of gonococcal pharyngitis, or a person may have a sore throat.

If gonorrhea has infected the eyes of a newborn during the birthing process, symptoms can include redness of the eyes and a thick yellow eye discharge. If left untreated, this infection, called neonatal ophthalmia can result in blindness, sepsis, and arthritis....more about Gonorrhea »

Symptoms of Gonorrhea

The list of signs and symptoms mentioned in various sources for Gonorrhea includes the 41 symptoms listed below:

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Gonorrhea: Symptom Checkers

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Gonorrhea: Symptom Assessment Questionnaires

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Gonorrhea: Complications

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Diagnostic Testing

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Do I have Gonorrhea?

Gonorrhea: Medical Mistakes

Gonorrhea: Undiagnosed Conditions

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Home Diagnostic Testing

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Wrongly Diagnosed with Gonorrhea?

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Other Possible Causes of these Symptoms

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Article Excerpts About Symptoms of Gonorrhea:

Gonorrhea: DSTD (Excerpt)

When initially infected, the majority of men have some signs or symptoms. Symptoms and signs include a burning sensation when urinating and a yellowish white discharge from the penis. Sometimes men with gonorrhea get painful or swollen testicles.

In women, the early symptoms of gonorrhea are often mild, and many women who are infected have no symptoms of infection. Even when a woman has symptoms, they can be so non-specific as to be mistaken for a bladder or vaginal infection. The initial symptoms and signs in women include a painful or burning sensation when urinating and a vaginal discharge that is yellow or occasionally bloody. Women with no or mild gonorrhea symptoms are still at risk of developing serious complications from the infection. Untreated gonorrhea in women can develop into pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). Please see below for more about the complications of gonorrhea.

Symptoms of rectal infection include discharge, anal itching, soreness, bleeding, and sometimes painful bowel movements. Infections in the throat cause few symptoms. (Source: excerpt from Gonorrhea: DSTD)

Gonorrhea, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID (Excerpt)

The early symptoms of gonorrhea often are mild. Symptoms usually appear within two to 10 days after sexual contact with an infected partner. A small number of people may be infected for several months without showing symptoms.

When women have symptoms, the first ones include:

  • bleeding associated with vaginal intercourse;
  • a painful or burning sensation when urinating; and/or
  • vaginal discharge that is yellow or bloody.
More advanced symptoms, which indicate development of PID, include cramps and pain, bleeding between menstrual periods, vomiting, or fever.

Men have symptoms more often than women. Symptoms include:
  • pus from the penis and pain, or
  • a burning sensation during urination that may be severe.
Symptoms of rectal infection include discharge, anal itching, and occasional painful bowel movements with fresh blood on the feces. (Source: excerpt from Gonorrhea, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID)

Sexually Transmitted Diseases Statistics, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID (Excerpt)

Approximately 50 percent of N. gonorrhoea infections in women are asymptomatic. (Source: excerpt from Sexually Transmitted Diseases Statistics, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID)

Sexually Transmitted Diseases, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID (Excerpt)

The most common symptoms of gonorrhea are a discharge from the vagina or penis and painful or difficult urination. (Source: excerpt from Sexually Transmitted Diseases, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID)

Gonorrhea: NWHIC (Excerpt)

The early symptoms of gonorrhea often are mild, and most women who are infected have no symptoms of the disease. If symptoms of gonorrhea develop, they usually appear within 2 to 10 days after sexual contact with an infected partner, although a small percentage of patients may be infected for several months without showing symptoms. The initial symptoms in women include a painful or burning sensation when urinating or an abnormal vaginal discharge. More advanced symptoms, which indicate progression to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), include abdominal pain, bleeding between menstrual periods, vomiting, or fever. Symptoms of rectal infection include discharge, anal itching, and sometimes painful bowel movements. (Source: excerpt from Gonorrhea: NWHIC)

Gonorrhea as a Cause of Symptoms or Medical Conditions

When considering symptoms of Gonorrhea, it is also important to consider Gonorrhea as a possible cause of other medical conditions. The Disease Database lists the following medical conditions that Gonorrhea may cause:

- (Source - Diseases Database)

Gonorrhea as a symptom:

For a more detailed analysis of Gonorrhea as a symptom, including causes, drug side effect causes, and drug interaction causes, please see our Symptom Center information for Gonorrhea.

Gonorrhea: Onset and Incubation

Incubation period for Gonorrhea: 2-10 days

Incubation period for Gonorrhea: In males, symptoms usually appear 2 to 5 days after infection, but it can take as long as 30 days for symptoms to begin. (Source: excerpt from Gonorrhea: DSTD)

Medical articles and books on symptoms:

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About signs and symptoms of Gonorrhea:

The symptom information on this page attempts to provide a list of some possible signs and symptoms of Gonorrhea. This signs and symptoms information for Gonorrhea has been gathered from various sources, may not be fully accurate, and may not be the full list of Gonorrhea signs or Gonorrhea symptoms. Furthermore, signs and symptoms of Gonorrhea may vary on an individual basis for each patient. Only your doctor can provide adequate diagnosis of any signs or symptoms and whether they are indeed Gonorrhea symptoms.

 

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