When it comes to testing for syphilis, myLAB Box™ uses a small blood sample to scan for antibodies in your blood that are produced as a result of the bacteria’s presence within your body. Luckily, since syphilis is bacterial — doctors can prescribe a course of antibiotics that can take care of your infection. The best course of action to recognizing syphilis is being aware of its four stages and the symptoms that come from each one. Luckily, most of them are blatant and easy to recognize. If you see any pattern in your symptoms with those of syphilis carriers, get yourself tested and take the proper steps to remain healthy. We recommend that you wait at least three to six weeks after exposure to test whether or not you have syphilis.
Since testing relies on antibodies for positive results, it’s important that you allow those antibodies to develop before you head to the lab, or send in results to myLAB Box™. Once you have gone through syphilis treatment, make sure that you get yourself re-tested approximately three months after treatment to make sure that your body has effectively fought off the infection. As an infection, syphilis does extreme damage to your body and your body’s nervous system. It can lead to birth complications and will eventually result in extreme levels of dementia, and eventually – death.
Even though the infection is treatable, the toll that it takes on your body is irreversible. Should you test positive for the infection, consult with our doctors at myLAB Box™ and make sure that you take any steps you need in order to rid your body syphilis. It is a very unforgiving infection. That being said, stay alert of these symptoms and stay on top of your option. Below is an outline of the four stages that syphilis goes through as it attacks your body:
As the rate of sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the United States has begun to skyrocket, it is now time more than ever to test for syphilis. Here’s why:
This infection, caused by the bacteria known as Treponema pallidum, is a highly contagious disease that is spread primarily through sexual activity. The infected person is often unaware of the disease and therefore unknowingly passes it on to his or her sexual partner. It may also be transmitted via oral and anal sex, and occasionally even by kissing.
Syphilis is spread via open sores, but relying on your visible symptoms is not a good preventative strategy. The fact is: the vast majority of those sores are often missed by a quick visual spot-check.
Good news is, contrary to many urban legends and superstitions: syphilis absolutely cannot be spread via toilet seats, touching a doorknob or sharing a hot tub.
However, throughout history, it has been a major threat to public health. Rampant cases of syphilis have caused many to suffer from serious long-term health problems, including arthritis, blindness and brain damage. This includes famous figures such as Napoleon, Al Capone and even Beethoven, suffered from the infection.
Fortunately, thanks to the medical marvel known as penicillin, we were able to stem the tide of this STD. Since the late 1940s, syphilis has gone from a serious life-changing diagnosis to yet another of the many curable sexually transmitted diseases. As long as the infection is caught in time, that is.
Syphilis is called an ‘early’ case if a patient has been infected for a year or less, such as during the primary or secondary stages of syphilis. People who have ‘early’ syphilis can more easily spread the infection to their sex partners.
During this stage, you may notice single or multiple sores in your mouth or around your body, depending on where syphilis entered your body. These sores are usually firm and painless and can even go unrecognized by the carrier. They usually last anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks and will heal naturally. However, just because the sore goes away, does not mean the infection is over.
If syphilis enters the secondary stage, you may see the appearance of skin rashes and sores in your mouth and around your genitals. These rashes will appear when your primary sore heals and will look red or brown depending on its location. It usually won’t itch and can appear on the palms of your hands or the bottom of your feet. Other symptoms of the second stage include fever, swollen glands, sore throat, patchy hair, headaches, and weight loss. Eventually, the symptoms will fade, but once again — that does not mean the infection is healed. At this point, the infection transitions into its most dangerous phases.
- A typically non-itchy red rash that spreads throughout the entire body, including the hands and feet.
- Skin rashes and/or sores in the mouth, vagina, or anus (also called mucous membrane lesions)
- Swollen lymph glands
- Sore throat
- Patchy hair loss
- Weight loss
Late and Latent Stage
The latent stage of syphilis begins when all of the symptoms you had earlier disappear. If you do not receive treatment, you can have syphilis in your body for years without any signs or symptoms. Most people with untreated syphilis do not develop late stage syphilis. However, when it does happen it is very serious and would occur 10–30 years after your infection began. Symptoms of the late stage syphilis include difficulty coordinating your muscle movements, paralysis (not able to move certain parts of your body), numbness, blindness, and dementia (mental disorder). In the late stages of syphilis, the disease damages your internal organs and can result in death.
- Loss of muscle control and coordination
- Death is a possible outcome due to widespread damage to the heart, liver, bones, and joints
There is one other type of syphilis: congenital syphilis. This is a form that a pregnant mother accidentally transfers to her unborn child. Most newborns will not show any sign of having the disease, but it is possible for them to suffer from a number of complications, ranging from a simple rash to deafness, teeth deformities and the collapse of the nasal bone.
How Do I Test for Syphilis?
Fortunately, syphilis is one of the many STDs covered by myLAB Box’s at-home testing kits and cured with antibiotics. Unfortunately, treatment simply cannot reverse any of the bodily damage that the infection has already caused. All the more reason why catching the infection early is so important.
To test for syphilis, myLAB Box asks users to take a small blood sample. We recommend that our users wait approximately three-to-six weeks after the initial possible exposure before taking a syphilis test.
Treatment and Staying Syphilis Free!
Typically, for those infected with syphilis, a single dose or multiple doses of antibiotics will be prescribed by a medical professional. Dosages vary depending on a patient’s symptoms and how far the disease has progressed.
Once you have been treated for syphilis, get re-tested in three months to ensure that the syphilis infection has been cleared.
Finally, remember that getting treated for syphilis once does not mean that you’re completely in the clear. You can still be re-infected. Early detection and treatment is key to total safety, since long-term exposure to the disease can cause life-threatening consequences.
Don’t wait. Get tested in the privacy or your home today.
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