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Important message from Public Health England Be Syphilis Aware-Get Tested, Get Treated

Important message from Public Health England

Be Syphilis Aware-Get Tested, Get Treated

Public Health England has advised that there has been a recent increase in the number of people diagnosed with syphilis in the Berkshire area. Sexual Health/Genito-urinary Medicine (GUM) clinics in the local area are advising people to be 'Syphilis Aware' and get tested and treated to stop the spread of infection.

  • Syphilis is a bacterial infection that is usually caught by having sex with someone who is infected.
  • Symptoms can begin with painless but highly infectious sores on the genitals, or sometimes around the mouth; anyone who has close contact with the sore, typically during sexual contact, can also become infected.
  • Syphilis can enter your body during vaginal, anal or oral sex, or by sharing sex toys with someone who is infected.
  • The sore lasts two to six weeks before disappearing. However, the bug remains in your body and can cause serious harm over time if not treated;
  • The risk of transmission of infection is significantly reduced by using condoms/dental dams for sexual contact, including for oral sex or with sex toys.
  • Syphilis can be passed on even if someone has no symptoms and also in later stage of infection (not just during the ‘primary’ stage).

Syphilis is completely curable and can be treated easily with an antibiotic (usually by injection).

Please call the clinic if you are concerned.

You can find details of your local GUM clinics at http://www.nhs.uk/Service-Search/Genito-Urinary-Medicine/LocationSearch/686

Sexual Health screening

Useful link for further advice and support: https://www.safesexberkshire.nhs.uk/

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