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Neurosyphilis Presenting with Papillitis
Martin Edward Perry, Sarah Cooper, Shona Corry
European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine - © EFIM


Syphilis is one of the oldest described infectious diseases in the world and is caused by the spirochete bacterium Treponema pallidum[1]. Although now a rare disease, incidence is increasing with the number of diagnoses of the disease rising in England from 1688 to 2713 between 2003 and 2012 (a 61% increase)[2]. Major outbreaks of syphilis have been documented in London, Manchester, Dublin, and Brighton particularly among men who have sex with men (MSM)[3]. Diagnosis remains difficult on account of multi-system symptoms, duration of the condition, and social stigma.


neurosyphilis, papillitis, treponema pallidus

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  2. Public Health England. Infectious Syphilis and Congenital Syphilis: Recent Epidemiology. Available from: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/infectious-syphilis-and-congenital-syphilis-recent-epidemiologya [accessed 30/05/2017].
  3. West of Scotland Sexual Health Managed Clinical Network. West of Scotland Syphilis Protocol. Available from: http://www.sandyford.org/media/3028/west-of-scotland-syphilis-protocol-ceg-march-2017.pdf [accessed 30/05/2017].
  4. Mehrabian S, Raycheva M, Traykova M, Stankova M, Penev L et al. Neurosyphilis with dementia and bilateral hippocampal atrophy on brain magnetic resonance imaging. BMC Neurol 2012:96 Available from: https://bmcneurol.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2377-12-96 [accessed 30/05/2017].
  5. Kingston M et al. UK National Guidelines on the Management of Syphilis 2015. Int J STD AIDS 2015;0:1-26 (NICE accredited). DOI: 10.1177/0956462415624059

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