[Question #631] Last follow up to end my possible anxiety in the future

43 months ago
Dear  dr Hunter, Dr Hook or Dr Warren,
I'm happy with the previous help from this website.
For the information, I've done my vaccination for Hep B and I was negative :-)

On all items I'm very happy Because of a small symptom (I don't think this really has to do with Syphilis), I knew I had to test for Syphilis because I want to have ease of mind a again when I get sick or something else. (also from the advise from Dr. Hunter) So I will test on the 29th of March to close all :-). But I have a few questions:

1) I know that neurosyphilis could give eye problems. But am I correct this would mostly cause both eyes to be involved? (I have a kind of irritation of one of my eyes, which got worse the last half week from the feeling of having sand in the corner to reddish skin around this eye, dry eye and the feeling it gets very tired in the evening(compared to the other eye). In the morning the symptoms are less.
2) Eventhough I think myself that point 1 is not really a syphilis symptom, I want to have the test still to be sure! But to be sure, can I go for a standard syphilis test or would I need to do something special as my encounter is already very long ago? I couldn't find this information at the clinic website and I want to be sure I have the correct information before going to do the test.

Thank you again for your


Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
Welcome back.  I'm sorry you continue to worry.  I will address your questions in the hopes that you will be able to move forward.
1.  When syphilis involves the eyes it may involve either one or both eyes.  Most often however it involves both eyes.  Dry eyes however are not a sign or ocular syphilis.  If your eye irritation was due to syphilis, your regular syphilis blood test would be positive.
2.  I anticipate that your test will be negative.  When it is, you should accept this that you do not have syphilis and that your eye symptoms are not due to syphilis.

I hope these comments are helpful.  Take care.  EWH
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43 months ago
Dear dr Hook,

Thank you for your reply and information.
This the reason why I decided to do the test. First I was confident I don't have anything anymore, but because if the irritated eye I had a stupid small voice 'what if etc'. I also would expect nothing wrong, but because of that what if, I decided to do the test and have all major/important std's tested. Thanks for the information that normal test (blood)would be ok, that was the only real concern I had on this. Also thanks for the confirmation the result will be negative, I also have that feeling, but because of that one moment I doubted it a little bit, I knew that I should test to have it confirmed on paper as I can imagine that if I didn't/don't that little doubt could grow.  I presume you will again are right about my result :-) so in advance thanks again.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
Thanks for your thanks.  Take care.  EWH---
43 months ago
Dear Dr Hook, I've done the blood test and they said it was a rapid blood test FTA-ABS. This came out non-reactive so from what I understood it's negative which was expected.  But eventhough I was pretty confident before going into test, with your reassuring words, the care taker after the result made my anxiety starting. This because she asked me the reason for the test, if I did other STD testing and if I had any symptoms. I explained to her about my other testings and said to her that I only have some physical problems with my eye but that this most likely is not linked to STD etc. But then she said that they take eye problems pretty seriously in combination with STD risk's and she will talk with the responsible doctor today or tomorrow and will call me back for possible next steps. I was a bit shocked about her sudden reaction etc (first she said that without having a penille sore in combination with my encounter the risk was very low, but suddenly this) I just left without asking further. I will call the clinic tomorrow morning to have this cleared. But as you can imagine got somewhat anxiety because of her reaction.

I would like to ask you one last thing to close this follow up:
Does the reaction from this care taker sounds misinformed or that I might misunderstood her in someway?

Thank you very much in advance


Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
Sorry that you are having to deal with this.  Your negative test is definitive evidence that you do not and have not had syphilis.  Interpretation of syphilis blood tests and their results can be confusing for persons who do not use them regularly and as we have already discussed, syphilis can occasionally cause disease in the eye.  In your case however, with the test results you have, you can be confident that you do not have syphilis of the eye or anywhere else.  I suspect the clinician you spoke with was just a little unsure of themselves and wanted to be sure.  It is good that this clinician wanted to be sure but this is nothing for you to worry about.  Take care.  EWH
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43 months ago
Dear dr Hook, I got a call this morning from the docter personally. He said  sorry for the confusion and nothing to worry about. As you mentioned the care taker(or assistant) was unsure and triggered because of my eye issue. The docter said like you, to believe the result and the eye problems (feeling of something like sand, red around eye and itchie and dry feeling are no symptoms for neurosyphilis at al as in most cases both eyes are infected and there would be pain in the eye, bad sight and normally other symptoms in the body lik severe head ache or severe pain in the ear and also mentioned lik you I really should let this go as having stress over something is a waste of energy etc).

Now I have this negative result, I have all the std's which are of any concern, tested :-) so this item can be closed.

Thank you again for your great replies and help.

Best regards
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago

thank you for the follow-up.  I am glad the miscommunication has been resolved and you have a negative result so that you can move forward without concern.  Take care.


As per Forum guidelines, this thread will be closed in a few hours.  EWH

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