Syphilis: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, Prevention and More

Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by a bacteria called Treponema pallidum. It is gotten through direct contact with a syphilis sore on someone else’s body which usually happens during sexual activity such as oral and anal sex. Syphilis sores can be found around penis, vagina, anus, on the lips, or in the mouth.

Syphilis can also be spread from an infected mother to the fetus during pregnancy or to the baby when giving birth. The infected person often doesn’t know that they have the disease and passes it on to their sexual partners.  It cannot be transmitted by sharing a toilet with another person or by wearing another person’s clothing. Without treatment, syphilis can cause severe damages to the heart, brain or other organs, and can cause death.

Symptoms of Syphilis

Someone can have syphilis without showing any symptoms for years. The symptoms can be very hard to notice, and it come and goes over time. The best way to know if you have syphilis is to get tested. Syphilis has different stages which is categorized as primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary. Syphilis is most infectious in the first two stages. When syphilis is the latent stage, the disease remains active but often with no symptoms. Tertiary syphilis is the most destructive to health. A variety of symptoms define each stage.