You Need to Know About Syphilis

Photo by Uriel Mont

Syphilis is a common, treatable sexually transmitted infection. The infection can often be recognized by the appearance of an open ulcerative sore known as a chancre on the genitals, mouth, anus, or rectum.

Symptoms of syphilis are categorized by stages of the infection:

Primary syphilis – a usually painless chancre sore will appear within 21 days of exposure and heal within 3 to 6 weeks without treatment.

Secondary syphilis – occurs within 4 to 10 weeks of a primary infection. A common symptom is a rash on the palms and soles of the feet. Flu-like symptoms may accompany the rash. Symptoms typically heal within 3 to 6 weeks without treatment.

Latent syphilis – marked by relative absence of symptoms, but the infection still hides in your body.

Tertiary syphilis – the most serious stage of the infection that causes skin, bone, heart, and liver disease, as well as neurosyphilis affecting the brain. Symptoms typically are confusion or concentration problems, irritability or depression, numbness in toes or feet, headache or seizures, or an abnormal walk.

Get tested and get treated for syphilis. Untreated syphilis can kill you. Walk in or schedule an appointment at any Central Outreach location today. Call (412) 515-0000 or visit centraloutreach.com.