Clinical and Histopathological Features of Secondary Syphilis

J Med Assoc Thai. 1993 Feb;76(2):85-92.


Fifty-four patients with secondary syphilis were studied in regard to the clinical manifestations, response to treatment and histopathology of the skin lesions. The correlation between the skin lesions and histopathology, between the duration of skin lesions and VDRL titer, between type of skin lesions and VDRL titer were also determined. The clinical manifestations varied from macular, maculopapular, papular, papulosquamous and urticarial lesions. The hair loss usually occurred on the scalp, but the eyebrows or even total body hair loss could occur. The response to treatment was good, only one patient relapsed. The histopathology was related to the clinical manifestations, there was sparse inflammatory cell infiltration in the dermis in macular lesions, but more dense infiltration as well as more epidermal change in papular and papulosquamous lesions. There were significant correlation between the duration of skin lesions and VDRL titer, but no correlation between types of skin lesions and VDRL titer.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Biopsy
  • Cardiolipins / analysis
  • Cholesterol / analysis
  • Developing Countries*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intramuscular
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Penicillin G Benzathine / administration & dosage
  • Phosphatidylcholines / analysis
  • Skin / pathology
  • Syphilis, Cutaneous / diagnosis*
  • Syphilis, Cutaneous / drug therapy
  • Syphilis, Cutaneous / pathology
  • Thailand


  • Cardiolipins
  • Phosphatidylcholines
  • VDRL antigen
  • Cholesterol
  • Penicillin G Benzathine