Syphilis Picture : Tongue

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syphilis tongue

This image depicts a lingual mucous patch on the tongue of a patient who was subsequently diagnosed with secondary syphilis, due to the Treponema pallidum bacterium.

Secondary syphilis is the most contagious of all the stages of this disease, and is characterized by a systemic spread of the Treponema pallidum bacterial spirochetes. Skin rash and mucous membrane lesions characterize the secondary stage. The characteristic rash of secondary syphilis may appear as rough, red, or reddish brown spots both on the palms of the hands and the bottoms of the feet. However, rashes with a different appearance may occur on other parts of the body, sometimes resembling rashes caused by other diseases. Sometimes rashes associated with secondary syphilis are so faint that they are not noticed. In addition to rashes, symptoms of secondary syphilis may include fever, swollen lymph glands, sore throat, patchy hair loss, headaches, weight loss, muscle aches, and fatigue. The signs and symptoms of secondary syphilis will resolve with or without treatment, but without treatment, the infection will progress to the latent and late stages of disease.

Content Providers(s): CDC/ Susan Lindsley

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