Vol. 11 No. 2 (2008)
Neurosyphilis in a Non-HIV Patient: More than a Psychiatric Concern
- Michael K Tso
- Kevin Koo
- Grace Y Tso
Neurosyphilis is a form of tertiary syphilis infection caused by the spirochete bacterium Treponema pallidum. Patients suffering from this illness can present with neurological manifestations such as headaches, seizures, hearing loss, and ataxia. However, the typical presentation of neurosyphilis is the insidious onset of psychiatric symptoms including personality changes.Agood history and clinical work-up is essential in the diagnostic process. There has been a recent increase in the incidence of infectious syphilis in Canada (1). However, in other parts of the world including China, infectious syphilis rates have remained high due to limited access to primary care and affordable treatments (2). Here, we present a case of neurosyphilis in a 40 year old Chinese male residing in China who presents with an 18 month history of personality changes as well as neurological and physical manifestations of the infection.
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