It might be time to stock up on condoms. The CDC released new guidelines for doctors today urging them to change the way they treat gonorrhea, a disease that is quickly becoming resistant to antibiotics. Doctors say nearly every drug once used to treat the STD, from penicillin onward, is no longer effective, reports USA Today. They're now encouraging docs to forgo the de rigueur oral antibiotics and instead opt for an injection followed by two antibiotic pills. But doctors aren't hopeful the new treatment will hold out against the disease for long.
A gonorrhea "superbug" has been found twice in France and once in Spain. It hasn't made it stateside yet, but doctors say that's just a matter of time. It's a scary prospect, as the illness can increase susceptibility to HIV and render women infertile. It's just one of several diseases, including staph infections and tuberculosis, that are becoming resistant. Doctors are in need of new antibiotics, but their short-term usage makes them less appealing to pharmaceutical companies than drugs that must be taken over the course of a lifetime, says the author of the new guidelines. (Click to read about how an old TB vaccine offers hope for type 1 diabetics.)