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January 1980

Syphilis Serology Today

Author Affiliations

From the Bureau of Venereal Disease Control, City Health Department, (Dr Felman and Mr Nikitas), Division of Dermatology, State University of New York Downstate Medical Center (Dr Felman), and the Department of Dermatology, Metropolitan Hospital Center, New York Medical College, (Mr Nikitas), New York.

Arch Dermatol. 1980;116(1):84-89. doi:10.1001/archderm.1980.01640250086025

† Serologic testing is an important adjunct in the diagnosis and management of syphilis. In this review, the various currently used serologic tests, both nontreponemal and treponemal, are considered. Special emphasis is placed on their relative advantages, applications, and limitations. Conditions under which these tests may be falsely positive are discussed. Additional diagnostic tools cited are the dark-field examination, for use in early-lesion syphilis, and cytological and immunochemical techniques for determining potentially active neurosyphilis. The analysis of every serologic report, and its correlation to the historical, epidemiological, and clinical findings, is highlighted.

(Arch Dermatol 116:84-89, 1980)