In recent years, the rate of syphilis infection has increased 19% in the U.S. Gay and bisexual men are at highest risk. LEARN MORE ABOUT SYPHILIS BELOW
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection that can cause serious health problems if it is not treated. Syphilis is divided into stages (primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary). There are different signs and symptoms associated with each stage.
Syphilis occurs in four stages with different signs and symptoms associated with each stage:
First Stage (Primary)
A person with primary syphilis generally has a sore or sores at the original site of infection. These sores usually occur on or around the genitals, around the anus or in the rectum, or in or around the mouth. These sores are usually (but not always) firm, round, and painless.
Second Stage (Secondary)
Symptoms of secondary syphilis include skin rash, swollen lymph nodes, and fever. The signs and symptoms of primary and secondary syphilis can be mild, and they might not be noticed.
Third Stage (Latent)
During the latent stage, there are NO signs or symptoms.
Fourth Stage (Tertiary)
Tertiary syphilis is associated with severe medical problems. A doctor can usually diagnose tertiary syphilis with the help of multiple tests. It can affect the heart, brain, and other organs of the body.
Any sexually active person can get syphilis through unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex. You should get tested regularly for syphilis if you are sexually active and:
Yes, syphilis can be cured with the right antibiotics from your health care provider.
However, treatment might not undo any damage that the infection has already done and it is very important to get tested early if you believe you have any symptoms.
Without treatment, syphilis can spread to the brain and nervous system (neurosyphilis) or to the eye (ocular syphilis). This can happen during any of the stages described above. Symptoms of neurosyphilis include:
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