Syphilis is a bacterial infection which is contracted through sexual contact with another infected person. It can also spread from mother to baby in pregnant women or among drug addicts who share needles with an infected person. The first stage of the disease is an infected sore on the genitals or sometimes in the mouth. People normally contract the disease via contact with this highly infectious sore. The second stage may include symptoms of a rash and sore throat. After a few weeks, the symptoms disappear and the infection remains latent for a period of time, which can be years. The last stage of syphilis is rare in the UK as it is usually caught in time for treatment but it can cause different effects depending on where the infection spreads to in the body.
People may suffer dementia, stroke or paralysis, or they may suffer from heart disease, blindness or deafness. A failure to diagnose syphilis can result in the infection spreading to other areas of the body causing symptoms to worsen and become debilitating.
Prevention and lack of treatment
Practising safe sex is the best method of prevention but the infection can be treated if caught early. Penicillin injections are usually the form of treatment used in the first stages of the disease but those who are allergic may be given an oral antibiotic. If the infection is not initially diagnosed and treatment is not given, symptoms can worsen depending on the area of the body affected. Stroke can cause disabilities that cannot be treated and heart disease can result in a lower quality of life. In addition, patients may suffer from disabilities like blindness or deafness. A failure to diagnose syphilis can lead to complications and you may be entitled to compensation should this have happened to you or a family member.
How to claim for medical negligence
You can call Accident Advice Helpline on 0800 689 0500 to get representation should you wish to make a compensation claim for a failure to diagnose syphilis. Where there is evidence that medical negligence took place and your illness progressed as a result you may be entitled to a cash payout to help you cope financially. The compensation won could help you with loss of wages or any lifestyle changes you may have had to make to help you with a disability associated with disease progression. Our no win, no fee* policy ensures that you won’t have to dip into your current finances to make your claim with us.