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What are the Symptoms of Gonorrhea?

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Updated July 15, 2004

Question: What are the Symptoms of Gonorrhea?
Answer: The symptoms of genital gonorrhea differ in men and women.

The cervix is primarily affected in women infected with this sexually transmitted disease; however gonorrhea can spread to the uterus and fallopian tubes if left untreated. Often women do not experience recognizable symptoms; however when symptoms do occur they can include:

  • abnormal bleeding
  • a burning sensation during urination
  • vaginal discharge
  • general irritation of the outer area of the vagina

The primary point of infection in men is most often the urethra. About one in five infected men may not experience symptoms of gonorrhea; however the majority of men who do have symptoms may experience:

  • a yellow pus-like discharge from the tip of the penis
  • stinging during urination
  • frequent urination
  • blood in the urine
  • swelling of the glands in the groin
  • the head of the penis may turn red

Other symptoms such as are pain, swelling, discharge can occur when gonorrhea affects the throat or rectum of both women and men.

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