[Publication] A historical approach to syphilis infection in Korea
From the end of the 15th century, syphilis spread worldwide, posing a serious threat to public health. Venereal syphilis has been a major research topic, not only in clinical medicine but also in paleopathology, especially because it is a disease of questionable origin and of high prevalence until the discovery of antibiotics. Syphilis in history has been studied extensively in Europe and the Americas, though less so in Asia. In this review, based on extant historical documents and available paleopathological data, we pinpoint the introduction and trace the spread of venereal syphilis in Korea to the end of the 19th century. This review provides fundamental information that will be of great help to future research on pre-20th century syphilis in Korea.