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PLoS One ; 15(11): e0241572, 2020.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33147295


INTRODUCTION: Neurosyphilis can occur at any stage of syphilis. After treatment, 30%-40% of syphilis patients remained serofast. But the prevalence of asymptomatic neurosyphilis (ANS) among serofast syphilis patients remains unclear. Untimely treatment or improper management for ANS may result in neurological complications. So we perform the meta-analysis to evaluate the prevalence of ANS cases among HIV-negative serofast syphilis patients for exploring their relationship and addressing their clinical management. METHODS: We searched CNKI, Wan Fang, VIP, CBMdisc, PubMed, Embase and Medline from January 1st 1990 to September 22nd 2020 for both English and Chinese records. We strictly restrict the eligibility criteria. STROBE was used for reporting quality assessment. We examined forest plots and conducted both fix-effects and random-effects to estimate prevalence by R version 3.6.2/R studio 1.2.1335 statistical software packages META version 4.9-9. If appropriate, between-study heterogeneity was examined using the I2 statistic and subgroup analysis. RESULTS: Of 77 screened records, 5 were included. The pooled prevalence of ANS among HIV-negative serofast syphilis patients was 13% (95% CI 3%-23%; I2 = 93% P<0.01, 417 people). The prevalence of ANS for the verified ANS classification definition was 3% (95% CI 0%-7%; I2 = 67% P = 0.08, two studies, 189 people), and 21% (95% CI 6%-36%; I2 = 86% P<0.01, three studies, 228 people) for the likely ANS classification. The prevalence of ANS among the serofast syphilis patients who were followed up for one year was 29% (95% CI 22%-36%; I2 = 0% P = 0.5, two studies, 167 people) and 5% (95% CI 0%-13%; I2 = 79% P = 0.03, two studies, 144 people) for two years. The prevalence in the studies from different geographical subgroups was as follows: 9% (95% CI 0%-19%; I2 = 82% P<0.01, three studies, 169 people) in South-central China, 6% (95% CI 1%-10%; one study, 106 people) in East China, and 30% (95% CI 23%-38%; one study, 142 people) in North China. CONCLUSION: This meta-analysis showed a high estimated prevalence of ANS in HIV-negative serofast syphilis patients, the prevalence of ANS among patients diagnosed with the verified ANS case definition is much lower than that for the likely ANS classification. It may be necessary to carry out nontreponemal test, protein test and leukocyte count for cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in treated serofast patients for better clinical management to avoid neurological complications. The case classification definition of ANS is a key factor to evaluate the prevalence. Geographical heterogeneity needs more studies to detect. In future we need better-design studies to explore relationship between ANS and serofast status.