Tertiary Syphilis of the Face

J Am Acad Dermatol. 1991 May;24(5 Pt 2):832-5. doi: 10.1016/0190-9622(91)70126-m.


We report a case of noduloulcerative tertiary syphilis that had gone misdiagnosed as discoid lupus erythematosus for many years. This case is noteworthy for (1) a Jarisch-Herxheimer-like reaction, (2) a dramatic response to penicillin therapy despite the presence of long-standing disease, and (3) posttreatment granulomas of possible hypersensitivity origin.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Facial Dermatoses / pathology*
  • Female
  • Granuloma / pathology
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Discoid / pathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Syphilis, Cutaneous / pathology*