Cenla has highest rate of Syphilis in state

So far this year, there have been a total of 110 cases here in Cenla.
Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 4:00 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Syphilis, a sexually transmitted illness, is growing at an alarming rate right here in Central Louisiana. That’s why the Louisiana Department of Health is encouraging everyone to get checked and get treated.

Region Six Office of Public Health Director Dr. David Holcombe said Central Louisiana has the highest rate of syphilis in all of Louisiana. So far this year, there have been a total of 110 cases here in Cenla. When it comes to congenital syphilis, which is when a mother transmits the disease to her baby, there have been 13 cases. That’s compared to eight congenital cases and 75 cases of primary and secondary syphilis in 2020.

According to Dr. Holcombe, syphilis usually causes a painless ulcer, although the infection can be hard to diagnose because there are multiple stages and not everyone shows symptoms. That’s why he said it’s important to get checked and treated as soon as possible.

“Syphilis is a difficult disease because it manifests itself in all sorts of different ways. It’s an easily treated disease, so the whole key here is to get diagnosed so that you can get treated and your partners can get treated. Because untreated partners will continue to spread it around the community.”

Dr. David Holcombe

According to Dr. Holcombe, about 40 percent of cases are now seen in women.

You can get checked at the office of public health or at any doctors office.

Case rates are also going up in the Shreveport, Monroe and Lafayette areas.

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