Background: Voluntary counselling and testing centres (VCTC) are important HIV screening points for the population with suspicion or apprehension for HIV, because of high-risk exposures. Theoretically, these are also at the risk of having co-infections, commonest being syphilis. The present short-term study was aimed at knowing the sero-reactivity of syphilis among a study cohort attending the VCTC in King George's Medical University, Lucknow, India.
Method: During a 2.5-month period, 49 HIV-positive and 171 HIV-negative sera were tested for venereal disease research laboratory (VDRL). The positive sera were further tested for treponema pallidum haemagglutination (TPHA).
Result: Eleven (22.4%) HIV-positive sera and 104 (60.8%) HIV-negative sera were VDRL-reactive (≥1:8 dilutions). Of these, TPHA was reactive in three (27.3%) and four (3.9%), respectively.
Conclusion: The result might suggest the need for routine screening and counselling for syphilis at VCTC. Studies from other centres on larger population are required.