FOX NEWS - Health officials are warning about untreatable “superbug” strains of gonorrhoea that has spread to at least three people worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) said its likely being spread to others through sex.
“The bacteria that cause gonorrhoea are particularly smart,” Teodora Wi, a human reproduction specialist at WHO, said in a news release. “Every time we use a new class of antibiotics to treat the infection, the bacteria evolve to resist them.”
The sexually transmitted disease can infect patients’ genitals, rectum and throat, and is estimated to strike 78 million people per year. Gonorrhoea is often asymptomatic and if left untreated could cause pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy and infertility, as well as increased risk of HIV.
The three cases, which were detailed in the journal PLOS Medicine, were confirmed in Japan, France and Spain. No known antibiotic has been effective in treating these patients.
“These cases may just be the tip of the iceberg, since systems to diagnose and report untreatable infections are lacking in lower-income countries where gonorrhoea is actually more common,” Wi said.