An increase in cases of a penicillin-resistant strain of sexually transmitted disease is occurring in the south part of Los Angeles County, health officials say.
The infection, identified as penicillinase-producing neisseria gonorrhea, resists treatment by penicillin, but it can be treated with another medication, said Dr. Satwant Sidhu, chief of the county's sexually transmitted disease program.
Symptoms include a painful urination or genital discharge. Most women, however, won't experience the symptoms.
As of Friday, 38 cases had been reported in June. In May, 56 cases were reported, Sidhu said. The infection is often associated with prostitutes, she added.
If left untreated, the infection can cause sterility and a crippling form of arthritis in men and women.