Various terms have been employed to denote syphilis in the new-born. The commonest are "congenital syphilis" and "hereditary syphilis," and yet neither is exactly correct. When one uses the term hereditary syphilis, it immediately brings up the idea of a condition transferred from mother to child according to certain laws of heredity. The word congenital, on the other hand, implies a child "born with syphilis existing at or from birth." In certain cases this might be correct, and again it might not bring out the true significance. If possible, it would be preferable to indicate in the definition the duration of the disease, its exact implication. The term "prenatal syphilis" has been suggested by Kolmer; i. e., syphilis before birth. This has been adopted by the Cooperative Clinical Group. Hoffmann has suggested the term "syphilis innata," i.e., inborn, existing in one from birth, for the severe fetal forms, and "syphilis
COLE HN. CONGENITAL AND PRENATAL SYPHILIS: CLINICAL LECTURE AT ATLANTIC CITY SESSION. JAMA. 1937;109(8):580–585. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.92780340008011
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