Correlation Between Changes in Syphilis Treatment and Jarisch-Herxheimer Reaction

Young Min Yang, Katsumi Shigemura, Reo Onishi, Koki Maeda, Shian Ying Sung, Kuan Chou Chen, Soichi Arakawa, Masato Fujisawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The number of syphilis patients has significantly increased recently in Japan and worldwide. Previous reports, even in large institutions, may not accurately reflect the current situation in urological clinics. We therefore collected data from 11 urological clinics in Hyogo Prefecture, Japan over a 2-year period subdivided into 1) August 2016 to July 2017 and 2) August 2017 to July 2018 to compare changes in syphilis consults. We analyzed the patient data including a rapid plasma reagin test (RPR), Treponema pallidum (TP) antibody, clinical stage, therapy, and presence of Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction. In total, 45 patients presented for a first consultation, 22 in the first year and 23 in the second year. Almost all patients were male. Initial consolidation and hard chancre were the major symptoms. RPR values and TP antibody values did not change. The treatment period with amoxicillin was significantly longer in the first year (p=0.006). A Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction was seen in 13.6% in the first year and 60.9% in the second year (p=0.001). The duration of antibiotic treatments was more likely to be based on the guidelines for antibiotic use in the second year, but Jarisch-Herxheimer reactions increased. Further follow-up including recurrent patients is necessary to draw definitive conclusions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E137-E142
JournalKobe Journal of Medical Sciences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Antibiotic
  • Asia
  • Sexual behavior
  • Syphilis
  • Urology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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