Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 60  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 270-276

Syphilis and psychiatry at the Mysore Government Mental Hospital (NIMHANS) in the early 20th century


1 Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, Sitaram Bhartia Institute of Science and Research, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Sarah Ghani
Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Hosur Road, Bengaluru - 560 029, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_449_17

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Prior to the advent of the Wasserman Test as a diagnostic tool for Syphilis, the identification rate for Syphilis at the Mysore Government Mental Hospital in Southern India was 1%. With the introduction of the test, there was a dramatic increase in the diagnosis of Syphilis, with 17% of the patients testing positive. This paper throws light on the early notions of Syphilis and GPI, societal responses to the disease, early misdiagnosis, the advent of the Wasserman test and treatment management as reflected in the records of the early 20th century at the Mysore Government Mental Hospital (currently known as NIMHANS).



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