Complications from this bacteria are rare but can occur as a result of bacteremia (the passage of bacteria into the bloodstream), where there may be invasion of other tissues.
As a result, there may be skin infections (in the form of painful pustules that bleed) or joint inflammation (infectious arthritis), which is common in the knee or ankle and causes a lot of pain when trying to bend or extend the limbs.
Inflammation of the meninges surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) or heart infection (endocarditis) may also occur.
Gonococcal sepsis can be life-threatening, although it's rare in civilized countries.
Ocular gonorrhoea occurs in adults by self-inoculation (touching the eyelids with contaminated hands and fingers, with purulent secretions from the genitals) or, in children during birth.
This condition usually occurs as inflammation and redness of the eyelids and the presence of pus, but can be complicated when the bacteria reaches the cornea.
Treatment includes eye washing and antibiotics.
During birth, a mother with gonorrhoea can transmit the disease to the child, causing neonatal conjunctivitis and other associated eye discomforts, just like adults.
The treatment of neonatal conjunctivitis for neisseria gonorrhoeae is the application of antibiotics (such as gentamicin) in drops.