By Ana S TB 4

What is Syphilis?

Bacteria called spirochetes that are transmitted through sexual intercourse.


  • During sexual intercourse
  • Mother to baby during pregnancy


  • Primary: Red, firm, sometimes wet sores (chancre) on genitalia- no pain involved, swollen glands
  • Secondary: Rashes on soles of feet and palms of hands, fever, and achiness
  • Latent: Period of illness- chancre are hidden but present
  • Tertiary: If syphilis still goes untreated, it spreads all over- can affect brain, heart, spinal cord, and bones. Can lead to difficulty walking, numbness, blindness, and death
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  • Doctors look at discharge from chancre
  • Antibiotics
  • Late stages cannot treated


  • Spirochetes can spread throughout body- infecting major organs
  • Brain damage
  • Can harm unborn babies
  • Increases risk of HIV infection


  • Don't engage in sexual intercourse
  • Latex condoms