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The only way to find out if you have syphilis is to get tested.
Syphilis won't normally go away on its own and can cause serious problems if left undiagnosed and untreated.
This page covers:
You should get tested for syphilis if:
It's particularly important to get tested in these cases if you've had unprotected sex, you have multiple sexual partners, you're a man who has sex with men, or you've had sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in the past.
The best place to get tested for syphilis is a genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinic or sexual health clinic.
These clinics are staffed by healthcare professionals with special expertise in STIs and they tend to have easier access to the tests and treatments for syphilis than your local GP surgery.
You also don't have to pay for treatment if you go to a GUM or sexual health clinic. If you go to your GP surgery for treatment, you may have to pay a prescription charge.
You can go to your GP if you prefer, although they may refer you to a GUM or sexual health clinic if they suspect you might have an STI.
You'll be asked about your sexual history and habits, and whether you're experiencing any symptoms.
To diagnose syphilis, you'll usually have a:
You should also be tested for other STIs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea, as it's possible to have more than one STI at a time. Some results may be available the same day, while others may take a week or two to come back.
You should avoid having sex or close sexual contact with anyone else until you get your test results.
Read more about what happens at an STI clinic.