Infection with Neisseria gonorrhoeae, a Gram-negative diplococcus that has been widely distributed throughout the world for several hundred years (since the beginning of the period of European colonization) and before that, in Europe, since early in the Common Era. It is primarily a sexually transmitted disease, gonorrhea, but also infects the conjunctiva and occasionally the synovial membrane of limb joints. The acute infection often evolves into chronic urethritis, salpingitis, pelvic inflammatory disease, etc., which impair fertility. Neonatal gonococcal conjunctivitis, caused by mother-to-infant transmission of infection as the infant passes through the birth canal, can cause blindness, and for many years has been prevented by routine administration of silver nitrate eyedrops immediately after the birth of the infant.
Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.