Brighton: Gay men urged to get tested for syphilis as rates soar

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Gay and bisexual men in Brighton and Hove are being advised to get tested for syphilis as rates of the sexually transmitted infection soar.

Terrence Higgins Trust has launched a new campaign for the city in response to the situation.

Fifty four new cases were reported between January and March of this year, which is four times the number within the same time scale of last year.

Syphilis can cause serious damage to the heart, brain and nervous system if left untreated.

It does not always have noticeable symptoms and can be transmitted through oral sex.

Ross Boseley, Health Promotion Coordinator at Terrence Higgins Trust said: “It’s concerning to see such a marked increase in the number of new infections locally.

Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust said: “Syphilis is completely curable with antibiotics, but if left untreated can lead to many complications.

Tests are available at the Claude Nicol Centre (Royal Sussex County Hospital, Eastern Road, Brighton BN2 5BE) without an appointment from 8.30am – 10.30am on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Terrence Higgins Trust also runs a weekly testing service from 6.00pm – 8.00pm on Monday evenings.