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January 29, 1955


Author Affiliations

University of Virginia School of Medicine Charlottesville, Va.

JAMA. 1955;157(5):465. doi:10.1001/jama.1955.02950220059019

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To the Editor:—  In the Oct. 30, 1954, issue of The Journal, page 894, appears an editorial entitled "Treatment of Syphilis." In most respects it is an excellent editorial, and it should help to ensconce the heavy metals securely in the archives to which they should have retired at least six years ago. One point in the editorial, however, is disturbing. The time is long since past when the sword of uncertainty need be held over the patient's head "for at least 30 years." The statement, "Whether the treatment of early syphilis prevents the late manifestations and in pregnant women prevents the transmission of syphilis to the fetus cannot be determined until penicillin has been used in the treatment of this disease for at least 30 years," is almost mystic in its sweep. Who has seen a patient with early syphilis, under treatment, achieve and maintain seronegativity in the blood

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