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How Does Syph Show on Tests?


A lot of people are concerned about continuing to test positive for syphilis after you have been treated and cured.    There are  steps to  being diagnosed for syphilis. The first is an initial screen called an RPR(rapid plasma reagin)    It is a non-specific antibody screen.  If it is found to be Reactive(not positive or negative) then a specific follow up test is done, often a VDRL(Venereal Disease Research Laboratory)  Other confirmatory tests include TPHA and FTS-ABS.  These confirmation tests give you a numbered ration result,2:1,4:1,8:1.   These numbers can indicate the level of the infection, or if the patient has had a previous infection and been treated a low result will indicate that.
However, the patient will always test Reactive on the initial RPR test, at which time the follow up test will determine if there is a new infection, through a high ration result, or if it is from the past infection, a  lower result.  These follow up tests are always done automatically when the initial RPR is positive, regardless if the person had a previous infection.  You do not assume that a positive RPR on a previously infected patient is from the past infection. There is always the chance the person has been reinfected, and the follow up tests will determine that.
This is a very basic, simple explanation of the process. Anybody concerned about their health should contact their doctor.  Every city has clinics that have people on staff to discuss this with any individual.
 There is a way to determine a past infection from a current infection, and I would suggest that those taking the lead in the testing program of the adult industry make this information clear to the people they are serving.
Protect yourself, and seek information from qualified sources.

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