Concerning New Strain Of Gonorrhea Detected In Massachusetts

STDs Test

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BOSTON (WBZNewsRadio) - A new strain of gonorrhea, found to be resistant to treatment, has been detected in Massachusetts. The Department Of Public Health (DPH) announced their findings Thursday and said it's the first time that "resistance or reduce response to five classes of antibiotics has been identified in gonorrhea in the United States."

Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that can present without symptoms. If left untreated, the bacterial infection can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility and other serious health problems.

The STD has been on the rise both locally and nationwide in recent years. Between 2009 and 2021, the CDC reported an increase of of 312-percent. Meantime the nation saw an increase of 131-percent during the same time period.

“The discovery of this strain of gonorrhea is a serious public health concern which DPH, the CDC, and other health departments have been vigilant about detecting in the US,” said Public Health Commissioner Margret Cooke. “We urge all sexually active people to be regularly tested for sexually transmitted infections and to consider reducing the number of their sexual partners and increasing their use of condoms when having sex. Clinicians are advised to review the clinical alert and assist with our expanded surveillance efforts.”

The DPH reports there have been two cases in the state and both were ultimately successfully cured with ceftriaxone, the antibiotic recommended to treat the disease. They add right now, there appears to be no connection between the two infected people.

While this specific strain is new to the U.S. the strain has been previously detected in Asia and in the United Kingdom. The DPH is working alongside the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), local hospitals, and health centers. An alert has also been issued to clinicians and laboratories to bring awareness to the new strain.

WBZ's Madison Rogers (@MadisonWBZ) reports

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