Early syphilitic hepatitis in an immunocompetent patient: Really so uncommon?

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The incidence of syphilis has increased substantially over the past years, particularly in men who have sex with men. The clinical manifestations of syphilis are variable and liver involvement is uncommon, but may occur at any stage of the disease. We report a case of early syphilitic hepatitis (ESH) in an immunocompetent patient referring multiple bisexual exposures, who presented at admission with jaundice, tiredness, an ulcerated genital lesion and an increase of liver aminotransferases. During his hospital stay, he developed a skin rash, and serology for syphilis was found positive. Our case report strengthens the need to take into consideration the diagnosis of ESH in all patients with unexplained liver enzyme increase and epidemiological data of unsafe sexual exposures. Indeed, an early recognition of the clinical manifestations of syphilis can lead to a prompt treatment, and allows the prevention of the transmission of this disease to other individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-66
Number of pages2
JournalInternational Journal of STD and AIDS
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008


  • Acute hepatitis
  • Immunocompetent patient
  • Syphilis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Immunology


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