At Home Testing for Syphilis
Let’s discuss how to test for syphilis at home. For any sexually transmitted infection or disease, early detection and treatment is the best way to stay safe. Syphilis is no exception. This infection is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in the United States.
A syphilis home test is a smart way to take control of your health. Syphilis is one of the most widespread sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in the nation. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it is spreading wider and farther across the United States each year. Let’s look at the symptoms of this sexually transmitted infection and three reasons why you might want to choose a syphilis home test.
In fact, reports released earlier this week by the California Department of Public Health show that the number of STIs in California reached a record high in 2017. Turns out, they are especially concerned about a sharp rise in stillbirths related to congenital syphilis. After all, long-term exposure to this infection can have serious repercussions and side-effects. Every sexually active adult should learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of syphilis.
The ordering process and learning how to test for syphilis at home are a breeze. Trust us, we designed it that way!
How to Test for Syphilis at Home
With myLAB Box’s at-home syphilis test kits, you can test at any time and from any place. No matter what, you’ll need to provide a tiny blood sample to a testing lab. Fortunately, with home tests, you don’t need to leave the house in order to do this. After all, we’ve included absolutely everything you’ll need in your test package.
Here’s how it works:
- Order a home testing kit (You even get free shipping!)
- Collect a sample using the easy-to-follow instructions.
- Send the sample back to the lab for analysis. (More free shipping!)
- Receive your lab-certified results online in just days.
Test for Multiple Infections At Once
Of course, now that you know how to test for syphilis at home, you don’t have to stop there. Beyond syphilis, you can also test for other common infection individually. These include genital herpes (HSV-2), HIV, chlamydia and gonorrhea, Hep C and more.
For even more convenience, myLAB Box also offers combination test kits. This allows customers to test for syphilis while also testing for multiple other common infections using only a single sample set.
- Uber Box: this 8-panel test kit screens for HSV-2, but also HIV (I & II), Hepatitis C, Syphilis, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Trichomoniasis.
- Love Box: this 8-panel test kit screens for the same infections that are included with the Uber Box, but includes a second test so that couples can test together.
- Total Box: this comprehensive 14-panel test screens for HIV (I & II), Hepatitis C, HSV-2, Syphilis, Chlamydia (genital, throat, + rectal), Gonorrhea (genital, throat, + rectal), Trichomoniasis and Mycoplasma genitalium. Women who are 30 years of age and older can add the option to test for HPV as well.
How Can You Contract Syphilis?
It seems that syphilis has been with us throughout the ages. The part that makes the infection so worrisome is the fact that any sexually active person can contract this STD. In fact, it is believed to have been the downfall of several major historical figures, including Al Capone and the Roman emperor Caligula.
The infection is transferred between partners through direct contact with a syphilitic sore. Using condoms can reduce the risk of infection, but this would require that the condom covers all of the sores. Know that you can’t contract syphilis by sharing a toilet with someone who has it, nor can you get it from hugging an infected person or eating from their fork. With that being said, it is good to know the different stages of syphilis.
Syphilis attacks the body in several distinct “stages.”
These stages are called:
- Primary Syphilis
- Secondary Syphilis
- Early Latent Syphilis
- Late Syphilis
Syphilis in the Primary Stage
The earliest phase of an infection may not show any visible symptoms at all. If there is a detectable sign of syphilis, it may resemble a tiny, painless sore. It can be difficult to even notice. This sore can be easily mistaken for acne or an ingrown hair. Within three-to-six weeks, it will disappear. Sadly, that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear. The infection is still inside your body.
Syphilis in the Secondary Stage
In the next stage, you may notice several new visible signs of syphilis. These syphilis symptoms can include:
- a bright red rash
- swollen lymph glands
- painful or scratchy throat
- sores may appear in your mouth, genitals or anus
- hair loss
- weight loss
Usually, these symptoms vanish within a few weeks. This disappearing act is actually the syphilis infection gearing up for its third stage: Latent Syphilis.
Syphilis in the Third Stage (“Latent Syphilis”)
Latent Syphilis may not seem like a “stage” at all. However, looks can be deceiving. For potentially several years, you may not notice any clear, detectable symptoms. Unfortunately, this is only leading up to the more-serious tertiary stage.
Late-Stage Signs of Syphilis (“Tertiary Syphilis”)
The final stage of syphilis can occur any time between 10 and 30 years following the initial onset of the infection.
The signs and symptoms of syphilis during this phase may include:
- Loss of muscle control and coordination
- Death is a possible outcome due to widespread damage to the heart, liver, bones, and joints.
Test and then Test Again to Stay Syphilis-Free
That’s how easy it is to test from the comfort of home! Of course, even after treatment… you’re not out of the woods yet. Re-infections are quite common with syphilis. To be absolutely sure you are safe, we recommend testing yourself again two weeks after your treatment ends. This is the best way to be absolutely sure of your status and your overall sexual health.
Don’t Stress, Just Test!
Reviewed by Luis Ferdinand M. Papa, MD, MHA
- Emma Carter, Will Nevin, Lucy Hedley. (2018). Syphilis: diagnosis and management options. The Pharmaceutical Journal.
- Queiroz RP, Smit DP, Peters RPH. (2020). Double Trouble: Challenges in the Diagnosis and Management of Ocular Syphilis in HIV-infected Individuals. Ocul Immunol Inflamm.
- Fatović-Ferenčić S, Kuhar M. (2020). Syphilis and Pharmaceutical Industry Marketing Between the Two World Wars in Croatia. Acta Dermatovenerol Croat.
- Akdogan N, Bostan E, Ozdemir DA, Ersoy-Evans S. (2020). A Case of Lichenoid Mycosis Fungoides That Became Apparent After Penicillin Treatment For Secondary Syphilis. Dermatol Ther.
- Pham MD, Wise A, Garcia ML, Van H, Zheng S, Mohamed Y, Han Y, Wei WH, Yin YP, Chen XS, Dimech W, Braniff S, Technau KG, Luchters S, Anderson DA. (2020). Improving the coverage and accuracy of syphilis testing: The development of a novel rapid, point-of-care test for confirmatory testing of active syphilis infection and its early evaluation in China and South Africa. EClinicalMedicine.
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