Sexual and reproductive health

Eliminating congenital syphilis

Syphilis in pregnancy

WHO/CDC Syphilis Serology Proficiency Programme

Two antenatal care nurses providing syphilis screening in Mongolia
Two antenatal care nurses providing syphilis screening in Mongolia

Proficiency Testing is important because it is a means of verifying the accuracy and reliability of laboratory testing. Quality control measures in syphilis serology are designed to ensure that reliable and reproducible test results are obtained within a laboratory and among different laboratories performing the same tests.

Over a million pregnant women infected with syphilis worldwide, causing serious health problems and even death to their babies.

Publication front cover

Investment case for eliminating mother-to-child transmission of syphilis

Congenital syphilis is a neglected public-health problem and the availability of cost-effective diagnosis and treatment is not a priority for many countries.



Initiative to eliminate mother-to-child transmission (EMTCT) of HIV and syphilis

The term "congenital syphilis" has traditionally been used to describe the adverse outcomes of syphilis infection in pregnancy. In 2012 expert consensus suggested that, whenever possible, the term "mother-to-child-transmission of syphilis" should be used in place of congenital syphilis in order to increase awareness of the full spectrum of adverse outcomes, including stillbirths, neonatal deaths, premature and low birth weight infants, as well as deformities at birth.