Syphilis is one of the many sexually-transmitted diseases that are prevalent nowadays. It is caused by a bacterium that is primarily spread from one person to another through engaging in unprotected sexual intercourse. It can also be passed on from an infected pregnant woman to her infant.
To know if you have been infected with syphilis, the following testing methods are used:
Venereal Disease Research Laboratory (VDRL) test
This method looks for the antibody produced by our immune system to fight off the syphilis infection. It requires a spinal fluid sample or a blood sample of a patient. It is not recommended for use if the syphilis is still in the early stages.
Rapid Plasma Reagin (RPR) test
This testing technique also searches for syphilis in a person's bodily fluid sample.
Enzyme ImmunoAssay (EIA) test
This testing method requires a patient's blood sample to be able to look for syphilis antibodies present in a person's system. If he or she gets a positive test result, he or she is advised to undergo either the RPR test or the VDRL test.
Treponema Pallidum Particle Agglutination Assay (TPPA) test
This is a confirmatory testing method that is implemented after conducting a syphilis testing using another technique. It also looks for the antibodies released by the body's immune system to battle the syphilis infection through a patient's spinal fluid sample.