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syphilis

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motherinneed:
May be an already answered question but I am new here so I need to ask .
1. If someone had neurosyphilis and it was treated with IV antibiotics will the tests you all are speaking of RPR and TPHA be able to show if the neurosyphillis is gone?
2. Once someone has had syphillis does it always show up positive in one's blood?
3. When you are HIV pos. can you really know if the syphillis has been treated properly throught those tests?

manchesteruk:
As far as i'm aware some who has been infected with syphilis and has been successfully treated will always test positive for it but it's inactive in the blood something like that anyway, i'm sure Matty will be able to explain that better than me.  Tar heel I was infected with Syphilis and HIV at the same time I hear it's not that uncommon certainly in my area I was informed that 40% of people diagnosed with syphilis were also HIV+.  I was told by my health worker when you are positive and have an STI, HIV piggybacks on the STI and it is much more likely you could pass it on.

Matty the Damned:
A specific treponemal test such as TPHA will always show up as positive if you've been exposed to treponema pallidum even after you've been treated. They merely indicate exposure to the organism that causes syphilis.

RPR and VDRL tests are not as such specific to syphilis. In that sense they're problematic when it comes to diagnosing syphilis per se. Pregnancy and some infections can cause reactive RPR or VDRL test results. Thus responsible practitioners perform both specific treponemal assays and RPR or VDRL tests.

Be suspicious of those who merely order the VDRL.

VDRL and RPR tests are useful because the indicate (when combined with a specific treponemal assay) the stage and degree of disease and they're important in understanding how treatment has progressed.

The upshot? Syphilis is complicated infection that requires the attention of a suitably qualified practitioner.

MtD

motherinneed:
Please explain..If one always tests positive after having been exposed to syphillis, then how does one k now the difference between a new exposure, a not well treated returning exposure or just showing a test that is positive as a result of an old treated exposure? What if you get syphillis again? How would you know if the test is always positive???

Matty the Damned:
In cases of re-infection the specific test is not of great use. Thus we rely on the RPR or VDRL tests as a diagnostic device. Like I mentioned above we expect to see a four fold reduction in the RPR titre three months after the cessation of treatment.

I would go on but AIDSMEDS is not a syphilis treatment site. I think it better for members with concerns about syphilis to contact a sexual health or HIV physician.

MtD

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