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Case report
Syphilis the great pretender: when is cancer not cancer?
  1. Neesha Rockwood,
  2. Nneka Nwokolo
  1. Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Neesha Rockwood, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London W1D 6AQ, UK; neesha.rockwood{at}


The number of cases of syphilis continues to rise in the UK, USA and elsewhere and may present to a variety of clinical specialties. We report a complex case of early acquired disseminated syphilis causing an ulceronodular rash (lues maligna), orchitis, osteitis and lung nodules in an immunocompetent man who has sex with men who presented to the genitourinary medicine clinic. Syphilis should be considered in the differential diagnoses of multiple clinical presentations and optimal management should involve multidisciplinary care.

  • syphilis
  • syphilis secondary
  • syphilis cutaneous
  • orchitis
  • osteitis
  • HIV infections
  • testicular neoplasms
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  • Handling editor Khalil G Ghanem

  • Contributors Both authors planned the article and drafted the manuscript. NR conducted the literature review.

  • Funding This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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