Gonorrhea is very similar to Chlamydia in its pathogenesis and symptoms. Both these STDs are caused by bacteria, so they are similar to other sexually transmitted diseases caused by bacterial infections.

Main characteristics of Chlamydia symptoms is the absence of any bothering or painful complaints during initial infection. Gonorrhea shares very similar characteristics with Chlamydia, it causes no bothering symptoms during Prodome, especially in women.

The incubation period for Neisseria gonorrhoeae,  the bacteria responsible for this STI, is not very standard. It has different time durations for different people even different in men and women. So, you would always find conflicting and confusing data on the incubation period of a gonorrhea incubation period.

There’s another reason which adds to this confusion- the absence of painful symptoms of this bacteria.

Symptoms are perceived changes in health which are mostly considered an aberration, never an advantage. The key is the perceived aspect, so it’s very subjective. Subjective things are changeable even in the same individual. That’s the reason why the incubation period of micro-organisms is always baffling.

OK, back to the incubation period of Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Some project it as 2 to 5 days, some as 7 to 21 days. There are cases where the first symptoms don’t appear even before 30 days. After all who is sure of the exact date of the infection? 🙂

In some extreme cases, symptoms only show up after the disease develops tertiary stage, i.e. after it spreads to other parts of the body. In other words, it’s called the constitutional stage of Gonorrhea.

Gonorrhea Symptoms in Women

The primary symptoms are very general, so they can be confused with normal fungal or yeast infection. A normal bladder or vaginal infection can manifest similar symptoms, a Gonorrheal infection is not conclusive. Only a NAAT Test or Urine Gonorrhea test can confirm it. Following are the symptoms which immediately follow after the incubation period:

  • Frequent urination with burning and smarting pains in lower abdomen particularly in the region of bladder and ovary.
  • Fever or a rise in body temperature a couple of degrees above normal body temperature
  • Lassitude and general tiredness.
  • Genital itching.
  • Itching and burning in anus
  • Bleeding or discharge from anus
  • Transparent, white, and creamy vaginal discharge which is very offensive odor
  • Vaginal bleeding during or after sex, and, between periods.
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Swollen and painful Bartholin glands (at the opening of the vagina).
  • Dryness in vagina in some cases
  • Pain during sexual intercourse.
  • A sore throat and hoarseness.
  • Redness of eye just as acute conjunctivitis.

Gonorrhea Symptoms in Men

In men Gonorrhea symptoms are more marked than in women, at least they are more obvious to seek a Gonorrhea test. There are rare cases too where men don’t develop clear-cut symptoms. This asymptomatic state is very contagious and most men pass the Gonorrhea infection to their sexual partners and spouses.

The following symptoms are seen in males who are infected:

  • Discharge of a milky white pus-like fluid from the penis at first. Then slowly it turns yellow. Sometimes it may be creamy or blood-tinged.
  • Frequent desire to urinate with scanty urination. Burning, smarting and painful urination, urethritis, and itching in the urethra.
  • Itching in the anus. There’s  bleeding or a transparent discharge in some cases.
  • Soreness and hoarseness in the throat.
  • Feverish with weakness and a desire to lie down.
  • Pain in the testes can be found in some rare cases.
  • Redness of eye just as acute conjunctivitis.


Complications of  Gonorrhea

If the subject isn’t able to understand that there is an infection, the symptoms grow mild after a few weeks. There may be occasional discharges- blood from the vagina in case of women and creamy white pus from the urethra in case of the male. In some cases, the symptoms are suppressed and the disease becomes constitutional. It’s called “Disseminated gonococcal infection” or DGI.


Constitutional Gonorrhea  symptoms

  • Stiff and painful joints even in young people which resembles arthritis.
  • Skin rash like scabies with gradual thickening of the skin.
  • Gradual weakening of heart with palpitation, sometimes missing beats.
  • Blood affection is a normal process where the RBC and WBC counts drop.
  • The tendons are inflamed and they become painful and non-functional.

Constitutional Gonorrhea or disseminated gonococcal infection opens the doors for other STIs especially AIDS.