The transmission of syphilis by blood transfusion is extremely rare. In 1935 Jones, Rathmell and Wagner1 reviewed 21 cases of blood transfusion syphilis and added 4 of their own. Eichenlaub and Stolar,2 in a more recent survey, reported a total of 41 cases, discussed this clinical accident at length and suggested a method for sterilization of blood from syphilitic donors.
In considering proof of transfusion syphilis the following criteria should be met: First, the recipient should have a negative Wassermann reaction before transfusion and a positive serologic reaction after transfusion, with or without a rash or other evidences of syphilis. Second, the donor before transfusion should be a syphilitic person with or without a positive Wassermann reaction or other signs of syphilis as detected by the physical examination or history.
One cannot approach this problem without appreciating the danger of blood transfusion. In many large hospitals blood transfusions
BULFAMONTE JC. BLOOD TRANSFUSION SYPHILIS: REPORT OF A CASE. Arch Derm Syphilol. 1941;44(1):23–25. doi:10.1001/archderm.1941.01500010026003
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