-- Robert Preidt
THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- Gonorrhea appears to be
growing increasingly resistant to drugs called cephalosporins, the
only remaining class of antibiotics available to treat the sexually
transmitted disease, according to a new report.
Researchers analyzed 10 years' worth of gonorrhea samples
(isolates) from men in 30 U.S. cities. The samples were collected
between January 2000 and June 2010 through the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention's Gonococcal Isolate Surveillance
The analysis revealed an increase in the proportion of samples
with elevated minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs), the lowest
concentration of antibiotics needed to halt the growth of gonorrhea
bacteria. These increases in MICs suggest a decline in gonorrhea's
susceptibility to antibiotics, the researchers explained in a CDC
During the study period, the percentage of gonorrhea samples
exhibiting elevated MICs rose from 0.2 to 1.4 percent of samples
for cefixime (an oral cephalosporin) and from 0.1 to 0.3 percent
for ceftriaxone (an injectable cephalosporin).
To date, there are no recorded cases of patients with gonorrhea
that couldn't be treated with these antibiotics in the United
The study is published in the July 8 edition of the CDC's
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The researchers called for increased efforts to develop new
treatments and a boost in gonorrhea surveillance in order to
identify emerging patterns of antibiotic resistance in gonorrhea as
Over time, gonorrhea has developed resistance to several
antibiotics. The CDC currently recommends dual therapy of
cephalosporins with either azithromycin or doxycycline. Treatment
options would become substantially limited if gonorrhea becomes
resistant to cephalosporins, the researchers warned.
Left untreated, gonorrhea can cause infertility in women and
increase the risk of infection with HIV, the virus that causes
AIDS, for men and women.
The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
has more about
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Copyright © EBSCO Publishing. All rights reserved.