Addressing the Wisconsin Syphilis Resurgence

After several decades of low syphilis rates across the nation, syphilis rates have begun to skyrocket across Wisconsin.  Known as the "Great Imitator", syphilis has a variety of clinical manifestations and a complex testing algorithm that make it a difficult condition to identify and treat.

As seen in the 1990s, with organized public health efforts and well-trained clinicians, it is possible to drastically reduce syphilis transmission. Wisconsin’s current syphilis epidemic must be viewed as a wakeup call to a treatable issue. Through enhanced screening, treatment, contact tracing, and education, clinicians can provide better treatment for active syphilis cases, and by doing so, prevent future outbreaks. 

This activity was created to provide a foundational knowledge of syphilis through case-based modules that can be applied in clinical practice. There are 4 separate courses to choose from that address syphilis care for clinicians in the areas of: 

  • Primary Care - Available Now
  • Emergency Medicine - Coming Soon
  • Newborn Care - Coming Soon
  • Prenatal Care - Coming Soon

Learners are welcome to enroll in one or more courses when they become available.   

ELEMENTS OF COMPETENCE

This continuing education (CE) activity is designed to improve learner competence in the following areas:

  • ACGME/ABMS Competencies - Patient care and procedural skills, Medical knowledge, Practice-based learning and improvement
  • National Academy of Medicine Competencies - Employ evidence-based practice, Population health, Apply quality improvement
  • Interprofessional Education Collaborative Competencies - Roles/Responsibilities, Interprofessional communication

TARGET AUDIENCE

This activity is intended for physicians, physician assistants, and advanced practice registered nurses in different specialty areas which may include:

  • Community/Public Health
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Family Practice
  • General Practice
  • Internal Medicine
  • Obstetrics/Gynecology
  • Neonatology
  • Pediatric Medicine
  • Preventive Medicine
  • Women's Health
Course summary
Registration opens: 
11/02/2022
Course expires: 
06/30/2026
Cost:
$0.00
Rating: 
0
Syphilis Care for Primary Care Clinicians - Learning Objectives
 
  1. Apply the syphilis testing algorithm to a patient presenting with possible syphilis.
  2. Recognize the various presentations of syphilis depending on disease stage.
  3. Identify appropriate treatment options for syphilis.
  4. Describe monitoring after treatment and assessment of reinfection.
  5. Define the role of public health and required reporting in syphilis management.

 

Syphilis Care for Emergency Medicine Clinicians - Learning Objectives
 
  1. Recognize the critical public health role of Emergency Departments in preventing the spread of syphilis.
  2. Interpret syphilis serology in the context of history and physical exam.
  3. Identify the stage of syphilis given history and physical exam along with appropriate treatment protocol.
  4. Recognize when empiric treatment for syphilis is necessary.
  5. Define the role of public health and required reporting in syphilis management.

 

Syphilis Care for Newborn Clinicians - Learning Objectives
 
  1. Recognize the severity of untreated congenital syphilis and the rationale behind overtreating.
  2. Assess the likelihood of congenital syphilis in a patient and be able to follow the corresponding algorithm for evaluation and treatment.
  3. Recognize that the only appropriate serology for diagnosing syphilis in newborns is non treponemal serology.
  4. Describe the appropriate follow-up protocol for potential congenital syphilis cases.
  5. Collaborate with public health, specifically the Disease Intervention Specialists, to ensure syphilis cases are monitored to achieve the best outcome for both the patient and community.

 

Syphilis Care for Prenatal Clinicians - Learning Objectives
 
  1. Describe the recommended syphilis screening regimen, risk factors, and interpretation of syphilis serology for pregnant individuals.
  2. Identify the various presentations of syphilis depending on disease stage.
  3. Describe the consequences of untreated syphilis in pregnancy and the role of maternal treatment in preventing congenital syphilis.
  4. Identify appropriate treatment protocol for syphilis in pregnant patients, including when the patient is allergic to penicillin.
  5. Collaborate with public health, specifically the Disease Intervention Specialists, to ensure syphilis cases are monitored to achieve the best outcome for both the patient and community.

 

 

Jessica Dalby, MD
Associate Professor

University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Medicine and Public Health

 

Helena Reising
Medical Student

University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Medicine and Public Health

Monica Kramer
Medical Student

University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Medicine and Public Health
Joel Hill, PA-C
University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Medicine and Public Health
 
Stacy Leidel, PhD, FNP-BC, APNP
Nurse Practitioner/Site Lead
UW-Health
 
Grace Leonard, EdM
University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Medicine and Public Health
ICEP staff


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