Parenchymatous neurosyphilis marked by slowly progressive degeneration of the posterior columns, posterior roots, and ganglia of the spinal cord. The condition tends to present 15 to 20 years after the initial infection and is characterized by lightening-like pains in the lower extremities, urinary incontinence; ataxia; severely impaired position and vibratory sense, abnormal gait (see gait disorders, neurologic), optic atrophy; Argyll-Robertson pupils, hypotonia, hyperreflexia, and trophic joint degeneration (Charcot's Joint; see arthropathy, neurogenic). (From Adams et al., Principles of neurology, 6th ed, p726)


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