In 2011 the number of gonorrhoea cases in the UK rose by around 25 percent. It is thought that the number of cases has greatly increased because the infection is becoming less treatable as it has become resistant to many of the drugs that are the first choice by medical professionals.
The Health Protection Agency has commented that the increased number of gonorrhoea infections is a serious concern. In 2011 it was also recorded that there was an increase in the number of sexually transmitted diseases by around two percent overall.
Gonorrhoea is a STI that is caused by bacteria and if untreated it can cause infertility. Commonly the infection is treated with antibiotics but some of these have stopped effectively treating the disease.
The head of STI’s at the Health Protection Agency is Dr Gwenda Hughes. She has commented, “Gonorrhoea is a global problem and we are very concerned about the diseases resistance to the antibiotics. This is a treatment that has been effective for several decades and for the next few years it seems as if this is going to be a difficult disease to treat.”
Fortunately, other antibiotics are available, but they are not the best choice for treating the condition. Even the most resistant forms of gonorrhoea can still be treated with more powerful antibiotics. An expert on gonorrhoea, Prof Cathy Ison has stated, “This resistance means that we are going to need a new drug very shortly, unfortunately, one has not yet been developed that is particularly targeted towards treating the resistant form of the disease.”
Between 2009 and 2010 the number of STI’s fell significantly, the first time this had occurred in over 10 years. It is unfortunate news for people that the number is on the rise again after such positive previous figures