» RELATED: New study on STDs finds Georgia among ‘most diseased’ states
Gonorrhea can infect the throat, genitals and rectum, but according to Wi, scientists are particularly concerned about the throat.
Wi told BBC that introducing gonorrhea bacteria into the throat through oral sex can lead to what's referred to as super-gonorrhea, a drug-resistant strain that is often untreatable.
» RELATED: HIV epidemic afflicting Georgia, the South a ‘public health emergency’
This happens because antibiotics taken to treat the infection mix with the super-gonorrhea in the throat and create resistance, Wi said.
The rise in resistant gonorrhea is largely due to decreased condom use, increased urbanization and travel, poor infection detection rates and either inadequate or failed treatment, according to the WHO.
Read the full WHO news release.