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Outbreak of Primary and Secondary Syphilis Among HIV Sero-positive Patients in Korea
Hee-Chang Jang, M.D., Jae-Hyun Cho, M.D., Wan-Beom Park, M.D., Ki-Deok Lee, M.D. Chang-Seop Lee, M.D., Hong-Bin Kim, M.D., Myung-don Oh, M.D. and Kang-Won Choe, M.D.
Department of Internal Medicine, College of Medicine, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea
Vol.36 Num.6 (p366~372)
Background:This study was performed to characterize the epidemiologic and clinical features of outbreak of syphilis among HIV sero-positive patients in Korea.
Materials and Methods:A retrospective case review of patients diagnosed with primary and secondary syphilis from July 1999 to September 2003 was carried out at Seoul National University Hospital in Korea. To estimate the incidence, person-years (PYs) of all HIV sero-positive patients, who visited the hospital in the same period, were calculated every 6 months.
Results:In a 51 month period, 465 HIV-positive patients were followed up at Seoul National University Hospital. 38 cases of primary and secondary syphilis were diagnosed. The incidence of primary and secondary syphilis was 4.1 per 100 PYs during the study period. There was no case from July 1999 to December 2001, and then the incidence rose until September 2003 from 5.5 per 100 PYs in 1999 to 18.8 per 100 PYs in 2003. The rate of primary and secondary syphilis was 4.3 times higher among homosexual and bisexual men than heterosexual men (95% CI 1.87 to 11.17), and 10.9 times higher among patients who did not receive HAART than patients who were receiving HAART (95% CI 5.47 to 21.79).
Conclusion:The outbreak of primary and secondary syphilis among HIV-positive patients started in 2002 and has been escalating, especially among homosexual/bisexual men and in patients who did not receive HAART.
Keywords : Syphilis, Outbreak, Epidemic, HIV