Syphilis/Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice has reported treatment of this disease to the Texas Department of Health since 1956 when they first required it. In 1988 the Texas Department of Criminal Justice began their own monitoring system and created a database for the accumulation of information and tracking of offenders who are treated for syphilis.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice will identify, test, and manage all offenders with suspected or confirmed syphilis with a uniform testing and management program. Once an offender has tested positive the physician at the facility where the offender is assigned will determine, through a history of the offender, whether or not treatment is required.
Yearly Syphilis Treatments
Yearly Syphilis Treatments (January through December)
|Total Male Offenders Treated
|Total Female Offenders Treated
|Total Offenders Treated
* Through December 18
Syphilis is an infectious disease caused by the organism Treponema pallidum. If the infection goes untreated, it is a chronic, systemic disease that passes through the following stages:
- An incubation period of approximately 3 weeks
- A primary stage of infection usually manifested by a chancre lasting 1-6 weeks.
- A secondary stage, appearing 2-10 weeks later, manifested by widespread cutaneous and systemic symptoms lasting 2-10 weeks.
- A subclinical latent stage diagnosable only by the presence of a reactive serologic test lasting anywhere from 1 to 40 + years.
- In approximately one-third of infected individuals, late syphilis, characterized by cutaneous, visceral, cardiovascular, and central nervous system lesion which can lead to debilitation and death.
Syphilis infection is almost always by direct contact with infectious lesions. Since the infectious lesions of syphilis are most frequently found about the genitalia or mouth, transmission usually occurs during close physical or sexual contact. An exception to this is congenital syphilis where infection is transmitted from the mother to her fetus.
Sexual contact tracing not only serves to prevent reinfection of the individual, but is a source of identification of other infectious or potentially infectious individuals and therefore is an effective way of eliminating small epidemics in the community. For every individual diagnosed as having infectious syphilis, at least one other individual with syphilis exists.
Parenteral penicillin remains the treatment of choice for all stages of syphilis. Injections of benzathine penicillin G is preferred because adequate treatment can be given with a limited number of injections and can be easily monitored to assure completion of treatment.