The causes and symptoms of syphilis are issues that most people are not aware of but this article will help shed more light on these issues.
Syphilis is an infection that is usually contracted through sexual intercourse. The number of syphilis infection cases has been increasing gradually since the year 2000. During the early phases of syphilis, pain-free sores can be found in the vaginal or mouth area, and also the lymph nodes around the groin can get bigger. These signs usually happen within ten days of being exposed to the bacteria. Risk factors for syphilis increase rapidly by having unprotected sex.
The syphilis is caused by a bacterium known as Treponema pallidum. Syphilis is normally transferred through sexual intercourse with an infected person. The bacteria enter into the body through small cuts or abrasions in the skin or mucous walls.
In rare case, syphilis can be contacted through direct close exposure to an active sore (like during kissing) or from an affected mother to her child while pregnant or during delivery (congenital syphilis).
Syphilis contacted using the same lavatory, bath, clothes or eating utensils, or through doorknobs, pools or spas.
Even after treatment for syphilis, a person can get re-infected if the person has sexual intercourse with a person having syphilis.
Among the very first symptoms of syphilis that will be noticed is a tiny sore, known as a chancre. The sore becomes visible at the exact spot in which the bacteria entered the body. Many people affected with syphilis develop a single chancre; some others develop several chancre. The chancre normally starts about three weeks following exposure to the bacteria. A lot of people who have syphilis do not notice the chancre since it’s normally painless and it is normally hidden in the vagina or colon. The chancre is likely to get cured naturally within 6 weeks.
In a couple weeks after curing the initial chancre, you might encounter a rash which starts on the trunk but will eventually covers the whole body — including the palms and soles of the feet. This particular rash is normally not itchy and could be followed by wart-like lesions around the mouth or vaginal area. Some individuals also suffer from muscle pain, a fever, sore throat and inflamed lymph nodes. Most of these signs and symptoms of syphilis usually vanish in a few weeks or continuously appear and disappear for as long as 12 months.
If the condition is not properly treated, the syphilis moves from the advance stage to the latent (hidden) stage, with no signs. The hidden stage sometimes last for many years. Symptoms of syphilis may not reoccur or the condition may advance on to the third phase.
Tertiary or late syphilis
Fifteen to thirty precent of those having syphilis that do not receive proper care, which lead to complications referred to as tertiary or late syphilis. In this phase, the condition can affect the brain, nervous system, vision, cardiovascular system, blood vessels, renal system, bones and joints. These issues usually happen only after some years following the initial, uncured infection.
Congenital syphilis Infants given birth to by mothers who have syphilis could become infected through the placenta or in the course of delivery. The vast majority of babies with congenital syphilis do not display any symptoms; however some suffer from a rash on the palms of their hands and also the soles of their feet. Later on symptoms of syphilis can include hearing problems, teeth deformities and saddle nostril.
Assessments and Examination
Syphilis is often diagnosed by screening samples of: Blood. Blood screening can establish the existence of antibodies which the body generates to battle infection. The antibodies to the bacteria that induce syphilis stay in the body for a long time; therefore the test enables you to ascertain a present or previous infection.
Body fluid from lesions. Your physician may take a little sample of tissues from the sore to get examined in the lab. This examination can be performed only when the syphilis is at the primary or secondary stage, where lesions exist. The scrape can expose the existence of bacteria that induce syphilis.
Cerebral spinal fluid. If your doctor believe that your nervous system problem is as a result of syphilis, your physician may also recommend you get spinal fluid test done through a process known as spinal puncture.
Immediate cure for syphilis is usually required for the infection, to prevent complications, and prevent the problem spreading to other organs.
Antibiotics can be used to successfully cure syphilis at any stage.
Antibiotic medication are unable to fix the problems caused by not treating the infection, however it can stop additional issues.
Re-examination of blood is necessary to ensure that therapy was successful.
Any person that has had sex intercourse with someone infected with syphilis should be evaluated, screened, and diagnosed for syphilis.
Penicillin is the most effective medicine for treating syphilis. Penicillin is considered the standard treatment to treat neuro-syphilis, congenital syphilis, or syphilis acquired or discovered while pregnant. In case you are sensitive to penicillin, inform your physician. Your physician will still be able to cure the syphilis however you might need to consult with a specialist on the best antibiotic to use.
Treating syphilis might not happen in the early stage due to problem with the symptoms. The symptoms of syphilis are most time similar to that of other illnesses. Syphilis has over the years been labelled as “the great imitator.”
Syphilis – Prevention
To stop the spread of syphilis, simply follow these recommendations:
Refrain or be monogamous. The best means of preventing syphilis will be to forgo having sex. The next-best choice is to have mutually monogamous sex with a single partner that is clean.
Make use of latex condom. Condoms can lessen the risk of getting syphilis, however only when the condom protects the syphilis lesions.
Stay away from illegal drugs. Too much alcohol or any other drugs may impair your judgment and result in you having unprotected sex.
Consult your doctor immediately you notice any symptoms of syphilis for proper diagnoses.