Syphilis Testing in Birmingham & Sutton Coldfield
When it comes to syphilis testing, timely results are crucial. Our clinic offers next-day testing with a simple procedure that requires a relatively small blood sample. We are dedicated to providing you with expert syphilis testing, allowing you to take control of your sexual health with peace of mind.
Our private GPs can evaluate and diagnose any concerns you may have with your sexual health and provide expert advice on appropriate treatments. Whether you are experiencing issues or seeking reassurance, you can schedule an appointment directly with us without a GP referral. In many cases, we offer a same-day appointment for your convenience.
What is Syphilis?
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection that can be contracted through vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected individual. One of the alarming aspects of syphilis is that its early symptoms, such as painless ulcers, can often go unnoticed. These ulcers, which may appear on the genitals, anus, or mouth, can lead to unintentional transmission if left untreated. Additionally, syphilis can be transmitted from an infected mother to her child during pregnancy, underscoring the importance of routine testing for pregnant women.
The Importance of Testing
Early detection and timely treatment are critical when it comes to syphilis. There are three distinct stages of infection, and treatment can be initiated at any stage. However, the sooner treatment begins, the better the outcomes. The primary stage is characterised by painless red sores at the infection site, which typically heal within a few weeks. If left untreated, primary syphilis can progress to secondary syphilis, marked by symptoms like a rash, white patches in the mouth, and flu-like symptoms.
What are the most common symptoms of Syphilis?
- Primary Syphilis: Red sores and ulcers appear, often unnoticed due to their painlessness. Swollen glands may also be present.
- Secondary Syphilis: Following the primary stage, symptoms can include a blotchy red skin rash, white patches in the mouth, and even wart-like growths. These symptoms may dissipate on their own, but the infection persists.
- Latent Syphilis: In this stage, there may be no apparent symptoms, making detection challenging.
- Late Syphilis: If syphilis remains untreated, it can lead to severe health complications, affecting the heart, nervous system, brain, and bones. Strokes, dementia, blindness, and heart attacks are potential outcomes.
How can Syphilis be prevented?
While syphilis had become less common in the UK, recent years have seen a resurgence, particularly among men who have sex with men (MSM). Engaging in anal sex without a condom, participating in group sex, and having sex while using drugs are factors that increase the risk of syphilis transmission. For MSM with new or casual partners, it’s recommended to undergo a syphilis test every three months to ensure early detection and treatment.
How can Syphilis be treated?
Syphilis is curable with antibiotics prescribed by a doctor. The usual treatment is an injection of penicillin into the buttock muscle. For penicillin-allergic patients, alternative antibiotics can be used.
If syphilis has been present for over 2 years, a longer antibiotic course or additional injections may be needed.
After finishing treatment, follow-up blood tests are recommended to confirm the disease has been cured.
Some common temporary side effects in the first 24 hours include headache, muscle aches, and fever. Allergic reactions are rare but can be treated if they occur.
It is crucial to avoid all sexual contact until at least 2 weeks after completing treatment, and best to wait until tests show the infection is cured. This prevents spreading the infection to partners.
Syphilis testing and treatment at Private Medical Clinic
At Private Medical Clinic, we prioritise your sexual health and well-being. Our specialist services encompass accurate syphilis testing, comprehensive diagnosis, and personalised treatment plans. We understand the importance of privacy and offer discreet testing, empowering you to take control of your health in a comfortable environment.