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S Afr Med J. 1993 Oct;83(10):725-6.

Re-screening for syphilis at the time of delivery in areas of high prevalence.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Natal, Durban.


Two hundred women who were screened for syphilis at their initial antenatal visit were rescreened at the time of delivery. Umbilical cord blood specimens as well as maternal sera were tested. Twenty-two (11%) women were rapid plasma reagin (RPR)-positive at booking, while a total of 23 (12%) were RPR-positive at the time of delivery, including an additional 5 (3%) who seroconverted. Four women who were RPR-positive at initial testing had become negative by the time of delivery following treatment. Of all neonates born to seropositive women, only 1 demonstrated clinical evidence of congenital syphilis. In view of the high seroconversion rate, we recommend screening for syphilis at the initial antenatal visit and rescreening at the time of delivery in areas such as ours.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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