Primary Syphilis on the Rise - from the ND Dept of Health

Posted 12 months ago

The NDDoH is seeing an increase in the number of reported cases of primary syphilis, showing that active transmission is occurring across the state. There have been seven reported cases of primary syphilis in July and August, which is equal to the total number of reports from January to June.

Primary syphilis is the first stage of the infection and is highly infectious. It typically presents with a painless lesion, also known as a chancre, and occurs at the anatomical site in which the bacterium enters the body. However, in some instances, the chancre cannot be seen.

Risk factors for these infections have been men who have sex with men, injection drug use and/or having anonymous sexual partners. In order to stop the transmission of syphilis, those infected and all their sexual partners need to be treated. The treatment for primary syphilis is 2.4 million units benzathine penicillin G IM. Persons who have had sexual contact with an infected person within 90 days of an early syphilis diagnosis should be tested and treated presumptively with 2.4 million units benzathine penicillin G IM.

For treatment guidelines and clinical management of syphilis, please refer to the STD Treatment Guidelines. For any questions, please contact the NDDoH STD program at 701.328.2378 or 800.472.218