Concept: Syphilis - Method of Identification
Last Updated: 2013-07-17
1. Brownell et al. (2012)
In Brownell et al. (2012), a Manitoba Health Report on the provincial count of syphilis by age and sex distribution for the year 2010 was examined (Manitoba Health - Epidemiology and Surveillance - Monthly Communicable Disease Reports / Manitoba Monthly Surveillance Unit Reports - 2010). This report indicates the number of reported cases of infectious or noninfectious syphilis as well as those that required additional follow up to confirm their status. For youths aged 15 to 19 years, two cases of syphilis for females were identified and none for males. For youths aged 10 to 14 years, there was one case for females and two for males. Thus, the small numbers preclude presentation by region or income quintile. For more information read the section titled Syphilis in Brownell et al. (2012) .
2. Lix et al. (2012)
In Lix et al. (2012), the Cadham Provincial Laboratory (CPL) data from 1992/93 to 2008/09 was used to identify the total number of syphilis tests and the frequency of positive tests (laboratory-confirmed cases) by fiscal year in Manitoba. Less than 3% of all syphilis tests were positive in each of the study years.
Data from the CPL Serology Section was used to identify the CPL number of syphilis tests and the frequency of positive laboratory-confirmed cases in Manitoba. The serologic tests are used to detect antibodies formed during the course of the bacterial infection. Two types of clinical serologic tests for syphilis are performed at CPL: nonspecific nontreponemal antibody tests and specific treponemal antibody tests. Both tests are essential to establish a diagnosis of syphilis (Manitoba Health - Communicable Disease Control Unit - Communicable Disease Management Protocol - Syphilis).
Table 1 reports the AUXCD5 codes used to identify syphilis testing in the Serology Section of CPL. For more information on CPL, see the CADHAM Provincial Laboratory (CPL) - Overview of Services and Data concept.
NOTE: On rare occasions a negative serologic result may be determined in an active syphilis case, particularly in older patients or during an early primary infection (Manitoba Health - Communicable Disease Control Unit - Communicable Disease Management Protocol - Syphilis).
Table 1 - Syphilis: Serology Section
STARTDT 1 STOPDT 2 AUXCD5 DESCR40 12/2/1993 1/1/2099 ARPR SYPHILIS SCREEN 12/2/1993 1/1/2099 CONF SYPHILIS CONFIRMATORY 1/1/1990 1/1/2099 DFA SYPHILIS DIRECT EXAM 1/25/2002 2/29/2007 DFAR SYPHILIS DIRECT FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY 1/1/1990 12/3/1993 FTABS SYPHILIS REFERENCE 1/1/1990 12/3/1993 IGM SYPHILIS IGM 1/1/1990 12/3/1993 MHATP SYPHILIS CONFIRMATORY 12/2/1993 1/1/2099 REF SYPHILIS REFERENCE 1/1/1990 12/3/1993 RPR SYPHILIS SCREEN 12/2/1993 5/1/2006 SIGM SYPHILIS IGM 1/1/1990 1/1/2099 SYRPR SYPHILIS SCREEN 1/1/1990 12/3/1993 VDRL SYPHILIS QUANTITATIVE 12/02/93 01/01/99 BVDRL SYPHILIS QUANTITATIVE
1 - The date that the code was created in the file.
2 - The date that the code became inactive.
Comparison of Lab Data to Hospital Discharge Abstracts and Medical Services Data
Syphilis diagnoses from the hospital abstracts data and the medical services data were compared to the CPL data. ICD-9-CM codes 090-097 and ICD-10-CA codes A50-A54 were used to identify the diagnoses of syphilis. Approximately 30% of positive tests (laboratory-confirmed cases) for syphilis had a corresponding diagnosis in either hospital abstracts or medical services data 180 days before or after the index date. For more information on how syphilis was investigated in the CPL data, read the section titled Case Study #3: Sexually Transmitted Infection Tests in CPL Data and Sexually Transmitted Infection Diagnoses in Hospital and Physician Billing Records in Lix et al. (2012) .