Causes and reducing risk factors
It is usually spread by vaginal, anal or oral sex without a condom. Always use a condom with water-based lubricant to avoid getting Gonorrhoea.
Identifying the symptoms
InvisibleMost people don’t have any immediate symptoms. If you have had unprotected sex, see your doctor about a test.
For malesIf you are a male, look out for a smelly fluid from your penis or swollen testicles.
For femalesIf you are a female, you may experience vaginal fluid discharge and pain when urinating.
Dangers if not treated
If left untreated it could lead to pelvic inflammatory disease in females and infertility in both males and females.
Untreated gonorrhoea may also increase your chances of getting or giving HIV.
A simple swab or urine test will determine if you have gonorrhoea. To get checked out or for confidential advice talk to your doctor or visit your local sexual health clinic.
There is a list of Public Sexual Health Clinics across Australian provided by the Royal Australasian College of Physicians.
Treatment is easy
Gonorrhoea is easily treated with antibiotics. It’s important to avoid sex until you’ve finished your full course of treatment and for at least a week following. If you can’t do this then a condom must be used.
If you have gonorrhoea it is your responsibility to let all your sexual partners from at least the past six months know so that they can be tested and treated if needed. For advice on how to make it easier to tell them visit the let them know website.
In most cases you’re not obliged to notify teachers or your boss if you’ve been diagnosed with an STI, but there are some rare exceptions for certain professionals who have been diagnosed with a blood-borne virus like HIV or hepatitis B. Ask your doctor for advice if you are unsure.
Always use a condom with water-based lubricant to avoid getting gonorrhoea.
 HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmissible infections in Australia –Annual Surveillance Report 2013.
Information about chlamydia from the Western Australian Department of Health.
The Let Them Know web site has been developed by Melbourne Sexual Health Centre to help people who have been diagnosed with Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Mycoplasma genitalium, Syphilis and Trichomonas to tell their sexual partners that they might also be at risk.
Sexual Health and Family Planning Australia have provided a web page listing sexual health clinics in every state and territory.