Wichita County gonorrhea cases are rising, and according to CDC, the STD has developed resistance to most antibiotics.
Joanna Van Sant, a nurse at the district’s STD Clinic, said 44 gonorrhea cases were reported in Wichita County in 2011; in the first seven months of 2012, 39 cases were reported. “It’s definitely a big increase,” she said. “A lot of times people don’t have symptoms, so they don’t know they have it. The only way they’ll know is if they come in and get tested.”
According to CDC, cefixime and ceftriaxone are the remaining effective medications, and cefixime “is becoming less effective in treating the [STD].” In response, new CDC guidelines recommend treating patients with ceftriaxone, which is injected, and one of two oral medications, azithromycin or doxycycline.
Van Sant said the Wichita Falls-Wichita County Public Health District already is using this treatment method. “At least for the past year (that I’ve been here) we’ve been doing that, and I’m sure it’s been longer than that.”
Because of the increasing cases and the existence of a “gonorrhea superbug” in Europe that is resistant to any treatment, Van Sant said she explains the urgency of the situation to clinic patients and encourages them to get tested and begin treatment before there is no treatment left. Patients’ partners also are urged to get tested.
Dr. Gail Bolan of CDC’s Division of STD Prevention said the development of new treatments is imperative, and “Health departments and labs can help CDC monitor for emerging resistance by enhancing or rebuilding their ability to do culture testing.”
For more information about the district’s health clinic, telephone 940-761-7844.
Date of Publication
Local and Community News
Disclaimer: NPIN provides this information as a public service only. The views and information provided about the materials, funding opportunities, and organizations do not necessarily state or reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC, or NPIN.