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by Arjan van Bijnen in Health & Body , 05 January 2019

Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar

GGD Amsterdam and Soa Aids Nederland have started a campaign to make gay and bisexual men aware of the symptoms of syphilis. It is an infectious sexually transmitted disease that often is not recognized as such.

Henry de Vries, dermatologist and researcher at GGD Amsterdam and Amsterdam UMC (formerly AMC): “Twenty years ago, the idea was that syphilis was dying out. At the STD clinic, we only saw about six cases a year. Since the turn of the century, this number has increased significantly. Now we see men with syphilis on a daily basis. Mostly, these men are men who have sex with men.”
“One of the explanations is that condom usage is on the decrease, now HIV / AIDS is no longer a deadly disease. You get syphilis through sex without condom, though there is also a small chance of getting it even though you are using a condom. The first year after the infection is the period in which you pass on the bacteria the fastest.”


“Syphilis can express itself in many different ways, and therefore often is not recognized or diagnosed. General practitioners also miss the diagnosis. We want to make men aware that a skin abnormality or wound can indicate syphilis.”

“If that is the case, they can quickly pay the GGD clinic a visit to get tested. Syphilis is easily treatable with one time two injections. If men would occasionally check themselves and visit our clinic for treatment, out hope is that we will decrease occurrences of this STD. Because the sooner you get treatment, the sooner you will not pass it on. You can watch a video on in which you get more information. You can also check symptoms online. Even if you have no symptoms, it is advisable to run through the check list, so you know what to look for.”

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