Have an honest and open talk with your healthcare provider about your sexual history and ask whether you should be tested for syphilis or other STDs.
Your doctor can do a blood test to determine if you have syphilis. Notice to Readers: CDC Statement on Study Results of Product Containing Nonoxynol-9.
However, sometimes sores occur in areas not covered by a condom.
It is still possible to get syphilis from contact with these sores.
In the United States, approximately half of MSM with primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis were also living with HIV.
In addition, MSM who are HIV-negative and diagnosed with P&S syphilis are more likely to be infected with HIV in the future.
Many men who get syphilis do not have any symptoms for years, yet they remain at risk for health problems if they are not treated. You cannot get syphilis through casual contact with objects such as toilet seats, doorknobs, swimming pools, hot tubs, bathtubs, shared clothing, or eating utensils.Syphilis is divided into stages (primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary), and there are different signs and symptoms associated with each stage.A person with primary syphilis generally has a sore or sores at the original site of infection.These sores usually occur on or around the genitals, around the anus or in the rectum, or in or around the mouth.If syphilis is not treated, it can cause serious health problems, including neuralgic (brain and nerve) problems, eye problems, and even blindness.In addition, syphilis is linked to an increased risk of transmission of HIV infection. Syphilis can be transmitted during anal sex and oral sex, as well as vaginal sex.Additionally, the painless sores that show up during the early stages of syphilis often go unrecognized by the person who has them. Resurgent Bacterial Sexually Transmitted Disease Among Men Who Have Sex With Men – King County, Washington, MMWR 1999;48(35);773. HIV Prevention Through Early Detection and Treatment of Other Sexually Transmitted Diseases – United States Recommendations of the Advisory Committee for HIV and STD Prevention. Individuals who are unaware of their infection can spread it to their sex partners. Reported at 2000 National STD Prevention Conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Syphilis is passed from person to person through direct contact with a syphilis sore.In men, sores can occur on or around the penis, around the anus, or in the rectum, or in or around the mouth.