Malignant syphilis: a review

AIDS Patient Care STDS. 1998 Dec;12(12):921-5. doi: 10.1089/apc.1998.12.921.


Syphilis is a disorder that may mimic many other diseases. Its incidence has risen and fallen over the centuries. A particularly malignant and virulent form, lues maligna, has recently been more frequently observed in the HIV-infected population. Raising the awareness of the occurrence of and the clinical and laboratory criteria of syphilis in general and lues maligna in particular in the HIV-infected population is becoming more urgent. Early treatment can result in a good outcome and stem the spread of the disease; as with other forms of syphilis, penicillin is the drug of choice.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • HIV Infections / complications*
  • Humans
  • Syphilis / complications*
  • Syphilis / diagnosis*
  • Syphilis / therapy