Why should women be treated for gonorrhea?

Gonorrhea is a curable sexually transmitted disease (STD), and women with the disease should be treated. For females, the most common site of initial infection is the cervix (cervicitis) and the urethra (urethritis). Without treatment, the bacteria can spread to the uterus and fallopian tubes. The resulting infection is called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). PID can result in scarring of the fallopian tubes, causing blockage that can result in infertility or ectopic (tubal) pregnancy, sometimes a life-threatening condition, and chronic pelvic pain.

Pregnant females infected with gonorrhea also are at higher risk of premature delivery. And when the infection is passed on to the infant, gonorrhea can cause serious eye infections. Transmission to a newborn results from exposure to the mother's infected cervix during birth.

Gonorrhea and chlamydia cause at least two-thirds of the cases of PID. Studies have shown that gonorrhea screening and treatment can significantly reduce the risk of lower genital tract infection, as well as PID. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.