The diagnosis of syphilis depends on a detailed history, careful clinical examination and specific investigations. Underlying these is the need to THINK of the possibility of syphilis. It is also important to investigate patients with syphilis for concurrent STDs.
Syphilis is classified clinically into early or late stages which relate to infectivity and are the basis of treatment regimens.
HIV and syphilis are commonly associated. In patients with AIDS and syphilis, standard regimens for syphilis are not always curative. Seronegative syphilis has been reported in patients with HIV infection. Lymphadenopathy in a patient with HIV infection may be due to coexisting secondary syphilis.