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Keywords:

  • neurosyphilis;
  • parkinsonism;
  • myoclonus, ataxia;
  • chorea

Abstract

After a significant decline in the second half of the 20th century, rates of infection with syphilis are again on the rise. Long known as the “great mimicker,” syphilitic infection can be difficult to recognize clinically and this particularly holds true for neurologic manifestations of the disease. Gait dysfunction and sensory ataxia have been historically well described in neurosyphilis literature; however, other movement disorders have been reported to a lesser extent. Here we review reports of movement disorders in acquired neurosyphilis. Given its increasing incidence, it is important to be cognizant of its diverse presentation and retain a high index of suspicion for syphilis, particularly as it is completely curable in the early stages. © 2012 Movement Disorder Society