More Free Syphilis Testing Available on Friday - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/26/08

More Free Syphilis Testing Available on Friday

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The City of Lubbock Health Department is offering FREE syphilis testing from 1:30 to 5 p.m., Friday, March 28 in the community meeting room of Mahon Library, 1306 9th Street.

The testing is being provided in response to a recent syphilis outbreak. Since March 1, health officials have diagnosed 8 syphilis cases in Lubbock County, and identified and treated 26 others who were exposed to the disease. All cases involve individuals between 21 and 38 years of age.

Anyone who is sexually active engaging in risky behaviors may have been exposed and should be tested, according to Tommy Camden, health director for the City of Lubbock.

"You may be infected with syphilis and have no symptoms," Camden said. "A blood test is the only way to find out if you are infected."

Syphilis is a dangerous but curable disease. If not treated, it can be fatal.

Symptoms of Syphilis include, but are not limited to:

  • chancres (painless sore or sores in mouth or on genitalia),
  • a rash (bumps) on palms or bottoms of feet,
  • body rash (dry or moist),
  • patches of mucous in mouth,
  • hair loss,
  • or moist warts in pubic or genital area.

Although symptoms disappear spontaneously without treatment, the person is still infected and the disease may spread to other organs in the body. 

Treatment for syphilis is unlike any other sexually transmitted disease and requires specific injectable medication.

Anyone unable to attend the screening may contact the City of Lubbock Health Department Sexually Transmitted Disease clinic at (806) 775-2933 to schedule an appointment for confidential testing and treatment.

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