Syphilis is a preventable and curable bacterial sexually transmitted infection. It is transmitted during oral, vaginal, and anal sex, in pregnancy, and through blood transfusion. If untreated, syphilis can cause serious health issues affecting multiple organs and systems, and in the most severe cases, death. Many people with syphilis do not have symptoms or do not notice them, meaning that regular testing is important for sexually active people.

Syphilis and pregnancy

Syphilis can be passed on from mother to child (congenital syphilis) during pregnancy. When not treated or treated late during pregnancy, syphilis can result is serious adverse birth outcomes including death of the infant. Adverse birth outcomes occur in 50 to 80 percent of pregnancies where there was inadequate treatment received.