Syphilis News and Research

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Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum. It has often been called “the great imitator” because so many of the signs and symptoms are indistinguishable from those of other diseases.

In the United States, health officials reported over 36,000 cases of syphilis in 2006, including 9,756 cases of primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis. In 2006, half of all P&S syphilis cases were reported from 20 counties and 2 cities; and most P&S syphilis cases occurred in persons 20 to 39 years of age. The incidence of P&S syphilis was highest in women 20 to 24 years of age and in men 35 to 39 years of age. Reported cases of congenital syphilis in newborns increased from 2005 to 2006, with 339 new cases reported in 2005 compared to 349 cases in 2006.

Between 2005 and 2006, the number of reported P&S syphilis cases increased 11.8 percent. P&S rates have increased in males each year between 2000 and 2006 from 2.6 to 5.7 and among females between 2004 and 2006. In 2006, 64% of the reported P&S syphilis cases were among men who have sex with men (MSM).

Syphilis is passed from person to person through direct contact with a syphilis sore. Sores occur mainly on the external genitals, vagina, anus, or in the rectum. Sores also can occur on the lips and in the mouth. Transmission of the organism occurs during vaginal, anal, or oral sex. Pregnant women with the disease can pass it to the babies they are carrying. Syphilis cannot be spread through contact with toilet seats, doorknobs, swimming pools, hot tubs, bathtubs, shared clothing, or eating utensils.
The state of sexually transmissible and blood-borne infections in Australia: the 2010 Surveillance Reports

The state of sexually transmissible and blood-borne infections in Australia: the 2010 Surveillance Reports

Reverby writes commentary for Bioethics Forum on syphilis study

Reverby writes commentary for Bioethics Forum on syphilis study

New book relates mercury in vaccines to autism

New book relates mercury in vaccines to autism

Safe sex campaign for over 50’s

Safe sex campaign for over 50’s

DIATHERIX Laboratories opens rapid response diagnostic panels for STD, HSV

DIATHERIX Laboratories opens rapid response diagnostic panels for STD, HSV

Cash rewards help combat STIs in rural Africa, study finds

Cash rewards help combat STIs in rural Africa, study finds

Inadequate funding for research, prevention will not help eradicate HIV in Quebec

Inadequate funding for research, prevention will not help eradicate HIV in Quebec

Study shows NAT programs increase HIV detection yield by 23%

Study shows NAT programs increase HIV detection yield by 23%

Azithromycin as effective as penicillin for early-stage syphilis: Study

Azithromycin as effective as penicillin for early-stage syphilis: Study

New initiative to reduce health inequities

New initiative to reduce health inequities

U.S. expands HIV/AIDS programs in Caribbean

U.S. expands HIV/AIDS programs in Caribbean

New CD4 test kit can improve quality of life for HIV and AIDS patients

New CD4 test kit can improve quality of life for HIV and AIDS patients

Social changes spawn massive resurgence of syphilis in China

Social changes spawn massive resurgence of syphilis in China

Anesthetist may have infected patients during procedure

Anesthetist may have infected patients during procedure

Injection drug use contributes to transmission of syphilis

Injection drug use contributes to transmission of syphilis

Increasing spread of HIV/STD disease among MSM in Africa and Asia

Increasing spread of HIV/STD disease among MSM in Africa and Asia

Winner of 2010 Thomas Parran Award

Winner of 2010 Thomas Parran Award

STD prevention programs in schools: Mixed outcomes on sexual behaviors

STD prevention programs in schools: Mixed outcomes on sexual behaviors

STDUniversity.org launches interactive, personalized STD test recommendation

STDUniversity.org launches interactive, personalized STD test recommendation

Study shows antiviral drugs could offer protection against HIV, Ebola, herpes and hepatitis C

Study shows antiviral drugs could offer protection against HIV, Ebola, herpes and hepatitis C