There has recently been a big increase in the number of cases of syphilis in Barnsley. In 2017 there were four times as many cases of syphilis in young women than in 2016 (Spectrum 2017).
Screening for Syphilis is part of the Antenatal and Newborn Screening programme, and pregnant women should be screened (tested) for syphilis as early as possible. If you change your partner during pregnancy then it will be worth considering syphilis screening again. Your midwife will ask you about this during your 28 and 36 week appointment.
To find out if you have syphilis your midwife can do a blood test. However, syphilis may not show on this test until up to 3 months after you have been in contact with syphilis. This means it is important to have a repeat test if you have any signs or symptoms of syphilis, even if the result from your 1st midwife appointment was negative. Some women may get an ulcer, skin rash or enlarged glands, however you can have syphilis without having any signs that you have it. If you have had any of these symptoms or have any concerns regarding syphilis then it is important that you tell your midwife.
During pregnancy syphilis can be passed from mother to baby in the womb. Having treatment for syphilis in pregnancy will reduce the risk of your baby having syphilis. The treatment is a course of antibiotics that will not harm your baby.
Please click on the link below for more information relating to syphilis or speak to your midwife.