How do I catch syphilis?

You can catch syphilis through oral, vaginal or anal sex with a person who has syphilis.


The chance of catching syphilis is reduced by using condoms during sex. Condoms also protect you against other sexually transmissible infections.


Syphilis is highly contagious through sex.


Syphilis can be transmitted from mother to baby during pregnancy.

What are the symptoms of syphilis?

  • You may have no symptoms, which is why regular blood testing for syphilis is important.
  • A rash over the body
  • A sore or ulcer on genitals (penis or vagina), anus or in the mouth. Even though this sore might heal, if you have not had treatment you still have syphilis and could pass it on to others
  • Swelling of glands in groin and armpits

Syphilis Fact Sheet

Syphilis infections continue to rise. Could I have syphilis? Get tested early.

Get the facts about syphilis