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Flexor tendon repair for hand, on prophlaxis. Can it mask VRDL for syphilis ?

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Practicing since : 2006
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Can prophlaxis iv antibiotics administered for flexor
tendon repair to hand mask a subsequent vdrl for syphilis and if so how long should one wait after such treatment before having blood drawn for the vdrl test?
Posted Mon, 16 Apr 2012 in Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Follow-up: Flexor tendon repair for hand, on prophlaxis. Can it mask VRDL for syphilis ? 1 hour later
How long a period of time will a vdrl test be accurate after a possible exposure?
Any and all details concerning accurate syphilis testing would be of great help to me.
Answered by Dr. Gaurang Krishna 5 hours later

Thanks for the query.

Yes, there are chances of prophylaxis antibiotics to mask the test results for syphillis and the VDRL may or may not be positive. It would be better to draw the blood for the test before starting on Antibiotics.

If you are looking for syphilis diagnosis, then TPHA(Treponema pallidum particle agglutination) and VDRL both can be done but VDRL is a non treponemal test and something can give false positive results. TPHA or FTA-Abs(Fluoroscent treponemal antibody absorption test) is a confirmatory test for syphilis and needs to done to confirm.

The test results are required to be correlated with the clinical condition.

Hope this answers your query. In case of any doubts, I am available for the follow up.

Thanks and regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Flexor tendon repair for hand, on prophlaxis. Can it mask VRDL for syphilis ? 6 hours later
After the operation when I MAY have received a one time IV prophylaxis
antibiotic during the tendon repair operation I had another negative vdrl test before my marriage to my only wife. This was 3 years after the operation. I recently had another NEGATIVE vdrl test with a NEGATIVE FTA-ABS confirmatory test. These tests were 35 years after the sexual contact I am worried about and also 35 years after the tendon repair operation with the possible one time intravenous prophylaxis. My wife and I have been in a totally
monogamous sexual relationship. After reading this do you think I have any reason to be worried about syphilis. My family doctor thinks I am obsessing
unecessarily and he may be right but I needed to get a second opinion. By the way I mistakenly indicated I was 37, I am 67. Wishful thinking I guess.

Answered by Dr. Gaurang Krishna 15 hours later
I think that your physician may be right.

A negative test then , and another negative test now with no clinical symptoms of syphilis and a negative FTA-Abs too, there shouldnt be any doubt of you not having syphillis.

So it would be best to stop thinking about it and just enjoy your life.

I totally agree with your physician. I hope it settles you down.

WIshing you good health.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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