Gonorrhea has affected humans for centuries and remains common. Worldwide, an estimated 106.1 million cases occur annually.1 In 2011, gonorrhea again was the second most commonly reported notifiable infection in the United States with 321 849 cases reported.2 Because gonorrhea often can be asymptomatic, the true disease burden may be closer to 700 000.3 Gonorrhea disproportionately affects racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities. Untreated gonococcal infection can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancy, and infertility in women and can facilitate transmission of human immunodeficiency virus.4 Childhood blindness still affects infants born to mothers infected with gonorrhea, particularly in resource-limited countries.
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