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Probability of having contracted syphilis?

Feb 25, 2013

Hello, I recently (4 days ago) had an encounter with a 24 - 25 yr old woman. This was a chance encounter that involved protected oral and vaginal sex. At one point there was slight discomfort caused from pubic stubble (hers). The encounter was rather brief, lasting 2 - 3 minutes only. This occurred in MS (3rd highest rate of syphilis in the US)

My questions are: How likely is it that I have contracted syphilis? What is the incubation period before I will know (chancre) or can be tested?

If I DO have it, am I still contagious even before a chancre appears? (since this is a systemic infection)

I understand penicillin is the proffered treatment. Is it possible or advisable to get a shot as a preventative?

Thanks in advance for your help/advice

Response from Mr. Cordova

Hi there:

Since you used a condom for both the instances of oral and vaginal sex the chances of you acquiring Syphilis would be much lower than if you had not used a condom. Syphilis is spread via skin-to-skin contact. Using a condom helps lower the risk, but does not eliminate it.

You are not contagious until the chancre appears, and only contagious on the surface of the chancre itself. A person is also contagious during stage 2. During stage 2, an all over body rash can appear. Coming in contact with that rash will also transmit the bacteria.

Treatment would only be advised if your partner was known to have Syphilis. If you like, you can go in for an initial test at 21 days, and a final at 90.

Overall, I would not be too concerned. You used a condom, this was a one-time occurrence, and the amount of time was brief. Transmission was unlikely. I hope this helps.

In health,


transmission of HIV on heterosexual males?
Vaginal Sex with Condom. Oral Sex without Condom.

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