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July 2016

Syphilis Screening in the 21st Century: New Recommendations for an Old Disease

Author Affiliations
  • 1Dermatologist, Kaiser Permanente, San Francisco, California
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(7):749-750. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2016.1596

Just over 6 decades ago, A.M.A. Archives of Dermatology and Syphilology—a forerunner to JAMA Dermatology—truncated its name. “The diagnosis and treatment of patients with syphilis is no longer an important part of dermatologic practice,”1 wrote the journal’s Chief Editor in January 1955, explaining that the publication would thereafter be called, simply, A.M.A. Archives of Dermatology. “Few dermatologists now have patients with syphilis; in fact, there are decidedly fewer patients with syphilis, and so continuation of the old label, ‘Syphilology,’ on this publication seems no longer warranted.”1 At nearly the same time, the American Board of Dermatology and Syphilology also jettisoned “Syphilology” from its name, becoming the American Board of Dermatology.2