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Chances of getting infected by Syphilis - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 21-Feb-2012
User rating for this question
Excellent Posted in: Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 2568 Questions
User :   I have had a "lump" near the bottom of my scrotum for approximately 4 - 5 weeks now. The lump started out somewhat firm but quickly became painful and resembled what happens when an ingrown hair becomes very infected. After about 2 - 3 weeks from first spotting this lump it became more tender, had a bit of a red color (probably from me squeezing on it) but eventually it started to "leak" fluid from inside. When I saw it leaking fluid I decided to try popping it like you would with an ingrown hair. A VERY large amount of puss and blood came literally shooting out (similar to what you see in movies when a major artery is cut) and then for the next few days I felt itching down where this sore was at, but it had been reduced in size since popping it. It has been two weeks since it popped and the "lump" is still there but MUCH smaller now. On a daily basis I am able to push VERY gently on it and puss still continues to come out but not nearly in the volume or with the pressure that it did the first couple of times I popped it.
All along I've been under the impression that this was just a really bad ingrown hair (note: i shave my pubic hair about once a month.) but yesterday I received one of the most disturbing phone calls explaining that I was listed as postentially being at risk by someone who was recently diagnosed with Syphillis. Our local health department is who called me, so I am sure their call was serious. I've read for hours about Syphillis online and I do not think that I have any of the symptoms. Pictures of the chancres look nothing like what I have, and I have not had any rashes or other symptoms. I will be going for a Syphillis test in the next few days "just to be sure."
Because this phone call was more than disturbing , I am now wondering if this thing I have near the bottom of my scrotum could possibly be Syphillis? Are there any
User :   fullproof ways of determining whether or not what I've had down there IS syphillis other than the blood test that I am going in for?
I've also read that use of Pencillans is common for treatment of Syphillis. I have a script of Amoxicillan (500mg 4x daily) that I've been on for about 2 weeks now for an unrelated matter, will that help "kill" the Syphillis stuff if I indeed do have it?
Doctor :   hello
User :   Hi
User :   nice to meet you
Doctor :   let me read your query give me a min
Doctor :   nice to meet you too
User :   no problem, it's a bit wordy, let me know if you need me to clarify anything
Doctor :   sure ok
User :   I also should note tha`t it has been at least 3 months since I've been in contact with unprotected sex , not sure if that matters much or not.
Doctor :   sure it does
Doctor :   well now first of all let me advise you strongly NOT to squeeze the lump
User :   ok
Doctor :   is it itchy ?
User :   not 100% of the time but it has tendencies to start itching sometimes, but goes away if i rub a little bit
Doctor :   and its been 4- 5 weeks now
User :   yes that's correct
Doctor :   have you had any other symptoms ?
Doctor :   fever or and body pain ?
User :   it's now much much smaller, and every day seems to be 'leaking' some of the fluid/puss inside without me touching it
User :   no fevers....body pains are difficult to tell with me because i have extreme arthritis in my hands and also have left-over pains from a bout with Shingles & Meningitous about 2-3yrs ago
Doctor :   any rash on any other part of your body ?
User :   but nothing unusual body pain wise
Doctor :   may i know your age ?
User :   no, no rashes... I read and looked at picutres online of the rash that syphillis stage II can cause, i have none of that
User :   sure I am 29yrs old
Doctor :   have you noticed any swelling in your inguinal area ?
User :   what is my inguinal area?
User :   i'm not sure what that refers to?
Doctor :   its the area between your thighs and abdomen
Doctor :   where they meet
User :   ok, no i have not noticed any swelling or discomfort
Doctor :   ok well from what you have told me it does not appear you to have the classic symptoms of syphilis
User :   ok - that's what i was mostly concerned with, and I didn't want to go purely off of the articles i've read but I agree that what I've seen doesn't appear to be related to it. This is very scary for me as I am normally very safe and healthy with my behavior, the call I received was more than concerning.
Doctor :   but yes since you did get a call from the care department it sure does means that you have to get the confirmatory tests done . what your problem more suggests to be a cyst with pus coming out
User :   yes - they've got me scheduled for this coming Monday to get the 'for sure' testing done
User :   is it possible for an ingrown hair to last for as long as this thing i have has lasted?
Doctor :   yes it can
User :   i've really never had one that got THAT much stuff inside of it (sorry to be gross)
User :   ok
Doctor :   and they are very notorious to reoccur . and lets not forget the fact that you kept on touching and squeezing it that delays the healing process
User :   ahhh i didn't know that - i was always taught you pop things like that ... i didn't realize it delayed the process
Doctor :   now i would like to advise you to do the following
User :   ok
Doctor :   yes popping can always make it more infected as germs can enter it
Doctor :   Do not squeeze, scratch, drain, open or puncture the lump
User :   that makes a ton of sense ok
Doctor :   Keep the area clean by washing the lump and surrounding skin well with an antibacterial soap
User :   ok
Doctor :   Apply warm, wet washcloths to the lump for 20 to 30 minutes, 3 to 4 times a day
Doctor :   major thing i would like to tell again is NOT to squeeze it ... and keep it clean
Doctor :   thats will take care of it
User :   ok i have that written down and underlined - it is a new concept for me so i will need to condition myself not to do that impulsively. I will also follow how you mentioned to keep it clean. How long can these things last, or is there really any specific duration?
Doctor :   and yes please DO get the test done by going to the physician for syphilis .
Doctor :   it should go away by it self in a weeks time if you follow the above precautions
User :   absolutely - as embarassed as I was to get the call I take it seriously, that's why I got online to settle my anxiety down a bit
User :   got it
User :   so it's probably stuck around this long because i've been screwing with it?
Doctor :   exactly
User :   got it, wow, good to know. I feel 10x better now. Thank yo
User :   u
Doctor :   we only make it worse by delaying the healing . body takes it own time and ways to heal
Doctor :   your are most welcome
User :   got it, makes total sense
User :   this was the best $16 i could've spent all weekend, love your service and I appreciate the clear information
Doctor :   thank you
Doctor :   is there anything else i can help you with ?
User :   no i think that is all I need right now, i'll let you get back to your Saturday. Thank you very much again
Doctor :   have a nice weekend
Doctor :   take care
User :   you too
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