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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 35003
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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I was just told after getting a physical that I have. I have

Customer Question

I was just told after getting a physical that I have syphilis. I have been dating and now married to my husband. We hav been in arelationship for the past 23 years. Neither of us have had any symptoms. My first question is how can this lay dormamt for so long, and how do I know if I am the carrier or my husband.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 2 years ago.
I am Dr. Arun and will be helping you today.
I am sorry that your question was unanswered for long.
This is likely to be latent or hidden syphilis. This may not have symptoms for years. Latency may last from a few years to as many as 25 years before the destructive lesions of tertiary syphilis manifest. Affected patients may or may not recall symptoms of primary and secondary syphilis. They are without symptoms during the latent phase, and the disease is detected only by serologic tests. It may have two types of course; signs and symptoms may never return, or the disease may progress to the tertiary (third) stage.
Your husband also need to be tested. If he is positive; it would not be possible to know who was initially infected. If he comes negative; than you would be primary contact. But with so long relationship; in all likelihood he too would be positive (as transmission from each other is very common in partners) and thus detection of primary contact is not possible.
Please feel free for your follow up questions.
I would be happy to assist you further, if you need any more information.
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