Gonorrhoea testing

Sample type needed

Urine or swab

Incubation period 

14 days

Who is this test suitable for?

Men and women at risk

Results time 

Within 4 days of receipt in the lab

Treatment

Curable with appropriate antibiotics

Where can I get tested?

All Better2Know centres

What is Gonorrhoea?

Gonorrhoea is an infection of the body caused by the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae. It is highly contagious and can be spread by sexual contact. If you have a Gonorrhoea infection, there is an increased risk of catching other STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections).

Gonorrhoea usually causes no symptoms at all at first.  It can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) and infertility in women, and inflammation of the testicles and prostate in men. In advanced cases, it can also affect the joints and heart valves in both men and women.

What are the symptoms of Gonorrhea?

Gonorrhoea can be asymptomatic in some individuals, meaning there are no apparent symptoms.  However, symptoms, when they do occur, can be seen from between 5 and 30 days after sexual contact with an infected person. Symptoms may include:

Men

  • Pain or burning sensation when passing urine
  • Discomfort, pain or discharge in the rectum
  • A sore throat
  • Unusual yellow/green discharge from the penis
  • Irritation, swelling, pain and discharge in the eyes that can lead to conjunctivitis
  • Pain in the testicles, urethra and penis

Women

  • Unusual yellow/green discharge from the vagina
  • A sore throat
  • Discomfort, pain or discharge in the rectum
  • Pain or burning sensation when passing urine
  • Bleeding between periods
  • Unusually heavy periods
  • Bleeding after sex
  • Irritation, swelling, pain and discharge in the eyes that can lead to conjunctivitis
Did you know? …

Chronic pelvic pain and infertility are just two of the many possible consequences of an untreated Gonorrhoea

What happens if I do not get treatment?

Men

If left undetected and untreated, a gonorrhoea infection can cause inflammation in the genital area.  This can lead to infertility.  Men who have a Gonorrhoea infection have an increased risk in developing prostate cancer. This infection can often not show any symptoms.  The only way to know whether you have this STI is to get tested.

Women

Gonorrhoea is one of the leading causes of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease in women. PID is a condition where an infection spreads to the upper reproductive tract.  This includes the uterus and fallopian tubes.  It causes damage to these organs as the infections causes scarring to the tissues. The build-up of scar tissue can prevent eggs from passing from the ovaries through the fallopian tubes and prevent them from reaching a sperm or the uterus.  Thefore this results in infertility and a higher likelihood of ectopic pregnancies.

Pregnant women infected with Gonorrhoea can have higher rates of miscarriage, infection of the amniotic sac and fluid, premature birth, and Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes (PPROM). The bacteria can be transmitted from the mother to their unborn child during pregnancy or labour. Newborn babies can develop conjunctivitis and may eventually go blind if left untreated.

This infection can often not show any symptoms, so knowing that you might be infected can only be determined by getting tested.

How do I get tested?

Better2Know’s testing service is easy and fast. The standard type of sample required for the test is a urine sample.  A swab of the throat or rectum can also be arranged if you think the infection might be in these parts of your body.

If you are concerned about other STIs that you may have contracted, you can also combine your Gonorrhoea test with other STI tests. Better2Know also have a range of screens available, which test for a number of STIs from the same samples.