Congenital Syphilis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Syphilis remains a significant infectious agent in pregnancy with the potential to cause fetal manifestations with maternal infection. Cases of congenital syphilis infection have recently increased, consistent with a resurgence of syphilis infections in the United States. All pregnant women should be screened for syphilis infection; many cases of congenital infection continue in women with scant or no prenatal care. Treatment with penicillin is highly effective in treating maternal cases, although some cases persist with incomplete or inadequate maternal treatment. High-resolution ultrasound (US) has the ability to prenatally diagnose many fetal signs of syphilis infection. The most common signs of fetal syphilis infection noted on prenatal US include fetal hepatomegaly, elevated middle cerebral artery peak systolic velocity, and placental thickening. Maternal treatment with penicillin therapy has the potential to resolve abnormal fetal US findings. Screening for maternal infection and sonographic screening for fetal sequelae are fundamental to provide appropriate maternal and fetal management to optimize pregnancy outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationObstetric Imaging
Subtitle of host publicationFetal Diagnosis and Care: Second Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9780323497367
ISBN (Print)9780323445481
StatePublished - 2018


  • Congenital
  • Hepatomegaly
  • Syphilis
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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