Syphilis is a highly contagious disease that is spread primarily through sexual contact. If untreated, it can lead to heart disease, brain damage, and blindness. Syphilis -- which has made a comeback in the U.S., especially among men who have sex with men -- is caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum, which enters the body through membranes around the rectum, in the mouth, and genitals. Early symptoms include chancre sores and rash around the rectum, genitals, and mouth. If untreated, the infection will begin to damage the organs. A woman infected with syphilis may pass it along to her newborn. Antibiotic treatment can cure syphilis, but cannot reverse late-stage damage from the disease. Follow the links below to find WebMD's comprehensive coverage about how syphilis is contracted, its symptoms, treatment, and much more.
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WebMD lists common symptoms associated with sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs.
Syphilis is a highly contagious disease spread primarily by sexual activity. Learn more about syphilis from the experts at WebMD.
Syphilis and Men Who Have Sex With Men
Learn more from WebMD about syphilis, a potentially dangerous sexually transmitted infection, and infection trends among men who have sex with other men.
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Think you might have syphilis? Only your doctor can tell you for sure. This article examines the tests your doctors will use to check for this common sexually transmitted disease (STD).
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