The Specific Treatment of Syphilitic Aortitis
Penicillin has made the specific treatment of cardiovascular syphilis easy to give and easy to take and has all but abolished dangerous treatment reactions. Just as the curative therapy of acute syphilis with penicillin is simple and feasible, so is the prophylactic treatment of cardiovascular syphilis in individuals with latent syphilis and uncomplicated syphilitic aortitis simple and feasible. In spite of the fact that the effectiveness of such treatment has not been conclusively established, the prospects seem bright that the incidence of cardiovascular syphilis will decrease sharply in the immediate future.
Cardiovascular syphilis may be treated, with or without preliminary bismuth and iodide "preparation," by the administration of 4.8 to 6 million units of penicillin in a period of 8 to 10 days. Larger doses and longer periods of treatment have been employed. Experience thus far does not indicate that penicillin therapy of established complications of syphilitic aortitis will be any more successful than was therapy of the pre-penicillin era.
- © 1952 American Heart Association, Inc.