Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia
On-line version ISSN 1806-4841
AVELLEIRA, João Carlos Regazzi and BOTTINO, Giuliana. Syphilis: diagnosis, treatment and control. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2006, vol.81, n.2, pp. 111-126. ISSN 1806-4841. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962006000200002.
Syphilis is an infectious disease transmitted through sex or vertically during pregnancy. It is characterized by periods of activity and latency, disseminated systemic involvement, and progression to acute complications in patients that remain untreated or have been inadequately treated. Syphilis is known since the 15th century and studied by all medical specialties, particularly by Dermatology. The etiologic agent Treponema pallidum has never been cultured and was described over 100 years ago. The disease has been effectively treated with penicillin since 1943, but it remains an important health problem in developed and developing countries. Given its transmission characteristics, the condition has accompanied the behavioral changes in society in recent years and has become even more important due to the possibility of increasing the risk of transmitting acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. New laboratory tests and methods of control aimed at appropriate treatment of patients and their partners, use of condoms, and dissemination of information to the population comprise some measures to control syphilis adopted by health program organizers.
Keywords : Sexually transmitted diseases; Syphilis; congenital; Treponemal infections; Treponema pallidum.