A new report released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reveals that gonorrhea causing bacteria, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, has become resistant to a large number of antibiotics that have been used to treat the sexually transmitted disease since the 1930s.
Physicians are currently using a class of antibiotics known as cephalsporins to treat gonorrhea but in 2011 two cases in Norway were found to be untreatable with the antibiotics while a new form of antibiotic-resistant bacteria was found in a female sex worker in Japan.
More than 300,000 cases of gonorrhea were reported in the United States during 2011 with the disease being the second most common type of infectious disease in the country. The report called on for safer sexual practices as well as annual screening for the disease among high risk individuals.
"The development and spread of cephalosporin resistance in N. gonorrhoeae, particularly ceftriaxone resistance, would greatly complicate treatment of gonorrhea. Experience and current data suggest that public health actions outlined in this report provide the best chance of averting the unfavorable outcome of multidrug-resistant gonorrhea", the report said.