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Diagnosing and Treating Syphilis

Historically, syphilis was not medically diagnosed but rather deduced according to the circumstantial evidence, which included information or supposition of illicit sexual experiences. This is a very poor system, when it comes to a disease often referred to as “the Great Imitator”.

Today, it is diagnosed using blood tests. A simple cheap test is performed, and if it turns out positive, it is confirmed by another more accurate test.

Testing for syphilis is crucial for anyone who has had unsafe sex, because of the tricky nature of this disease, and because it is now so simple to diagnose and treat.

Since the 16th century when syphilis began its scourge across Europe, doctors and healers have used a wide range of antidotes in attempts to cure it and provide relief form the horrific conditions that untreated syphilis can cause.

Nothing, including mercury and arsenic, which at different times were medically prescribed as the best available options, managed to beat this disease. That is, until 1943 when the recently available penicillin proved to be highly effective.

Although the medication is effective, killing the bacterial agents that cause the disease cannot undo any damage that has been done over the time since infection. Having said that, once medical help is sought and a correct diagnosis exists, help can be sought to relieve and stabilize each condition. Without this treatment, once syphilis begins affecting the heart, brain other crucial systems, it can be fatal.

A person who is cured of syphilis can be reinfected, from the same partner if they have not been treated, or by any other lover.

More on how to prevent syphilis infection


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