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The changing face of neurosyphilis


  • Conflict of interest: None declared.

Muhammad S. Hussain*, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 9500 Euclid Ave, S-80, Cleveland, OH 44016, USA. E-mail:


The incidence of syphilis has increased over the past decade, particularly among HIV-positive patients, and the presenting clinical features have changed since the beginning of the HIV epidemic. The clinical manifestations of neurosyphilis are protean, and include acute stroke. In patients with HIV, the diagnosis and treatment of neurosyphilis is challenging. We review the clinical presentation, pathophysiology, and treatment of neurosyphilis, with emphasis on neurosyphilis in the HIV population, and neurosyphilis as a cause of acute stroke.