Originally posted on National Post | News:
Doctors have long considered neurosyphilis – the late-stage, brain-related phase of the sexually transmitted infection – as a historical relic, the “disease of the century” in the 1800s but all but beaten down by antibiotics.
Now, though, the illness blamed for the madness of historical figures from Friedrich Nietzsche to Vladimir Lenin to Al Capone appears on the rise again in Canada and elsewhere, some experts believe.
Specialists are reporting signs of a small but significant surge in cases where syphilis triggers sometimes strange neurological effects or serious inflammatory eye disease, called uveitis.
“Uveitis from syphilis was almost unheard of 10, 20 years ago,” said Dr. Farzin Forooghian, a University of British Columbia ophthalmologist. “[Now] there is almost a little epidemic happening … Talking to my colleagues across North America at meetings, people are seeing a lot more.”
Though opthalmologists are still trained to test for syphilis in patients…
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