FOR the past two years syphilis in adults has been treated with penicillin, and at the present time it is thought that this form of therapy has been encouragingly successful. Sixteen months ago, several of us became interested in the possibility of treating babies and children with congenital and with acquired syphilis with penicillin. As penicillin is less toxic than arsenicals and heavy metals, it was felt that an effort should be made to determine whether its therapeutic efficiency was comparable to that of arsenicals and heavy metals.
In the past sixteen months, we have treated 39 syphilitic children with penicillin. Eleven of these had acquired syphilis, and 28 had congenital syphilis. There has been 1 death in our series and 3 mild reactions. We do not as yet have any idea of the optimal dosage of penicillin in the treatment of syphilis. We have used total dosages of
ARTHUR W. NEILSON, FREDERICK H. CHARD, W. G. KLINGBERG, LELAND J. HANCHETT, WILLIAM H. GABBY, JACK RODRIQUEZ, CARLETON WATKINS. TREATMENT OF CONGENITAL AND OF ACQUIRED SYPHILIS IN INFANTS AND IN CHILDREN BY PENICILLIN. Arch Derm Syphilol. 1946;53(6):625–632. doi:10.1001/archderm.1946.01510350065013