By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The Oklahoma Department of Health has reported dramatic increases in primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis in women in recent years, as well as increases in congenital syphilis.


From 2014 to 2018, Oklahoma experienced a 860% increase in the number of primary and secondary syphilis cases among women. Oklahoma also saw one of the greatest absolute increases in primary and secondary syphilis cases among women over the past five years when compared to other states in the nation.

Oklahoma’s absolute rate increase is higher than the national average, higher than the Southern regional average and higher than all the neighboring states.

Since 2014, Oklahoma has seen a 283% increase in congenital syphilis cases. By October 2019, Oklahoma experienced a 92% increase in the number of congenital syphilis cases from the previous year.

Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by a bacteria called Treponema Pallidum. Syphilis is often called “The Great Imitator” because so many of the signs and symptoms are similar to those of other conditions.

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Congenital syphilis is an infectious disease transmitted by an infected mother to her baby in the womb. Adults transmit syphilis through sexual contact but mothers can transmit the infection to their baby in the womb or through the birthing process. The disease can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, death shortly after birth, prematurity and birth defects. A woman can be treated and cured for syphilis during pregnancy, but it is important for women to be tested in time for treatment to be effective. Babies who test positive for syphilis at birth must be treated immediately to prevent serious health issues.