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Rimming, Flesh-Eating Bacteria, Drug-Resistant Gonorrhea, and More

RIMMING

What infections can be spread by rimming?

Nicholas Moss, MD, MPH: There are a few different types of infections that can be spread by rimming. First, infections that can be transmitted from skin to skin contact (like syphilis) could be spread by rimming. Syphilis bacteria live in active skin sores, or lesions, and can infect other skin it comes in contact with. I’ve even seen one patient who had a syphilis sore on his forehead. People can get gonorrhea of the throat, so that’s another infection that could be spread by rimming. Chlamydia of the throat is not spread orally, to my knowledge. So there’s probably no risk of getting or transmitting chlamydia when rimming.

Also, it’s possible to get other kinds of infections when you come into contact with fecal material. It’s possible to get hepatitis A, and infections like diarrheal illness and food poisoning if you come into contact with someone who has recently been infected with something like salmonella.

What’s going on with drug-resistant gonorrhea?

I think we’re headed to a world where we have strains of gonorrhea that we just aren’t able to treat. Over the last 70 or so years that we’ve been using antibiotics to treat gonorrhea, the bacteria has gotten better and better at beating the drugs we’ve used to kill it. “Drug resistant” just means that the bacteria has evolved to the point where certain antibiotics no longer work against it. So far, we’ve had a few cases of people with gonorrhea that’s extremely difficult to treat, but it’s very rare. Now, we routinely use two drugs at the same time to treat gonorrhea to make sure that we get rid of the infection.

How do you know if you do get drug-resistant gonorrhea?

We ask people to wait about a week for their gonorrhea treatment to work. If, after a week, you still have symptoms then you should give your doctor another call.

Read the full article on BETA

 

Need more information about sexually transmitted infections? Check out the STI articles that are part of Strut’s online resources. Gay, bisexual and transgender men can get tested for STIs for free, in San Francisco at Strut. Find more info on FREE STI testing, here.

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