Yaws is a long-term (chronic) infection that mainly affects the skin, bones, and joints.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
Yaws is an infection caused by the spiral-shaped bacteria, Treponema pallidum, subspecies pertenue. It is closely related to the bacteria that cause syphilis, but this disease is not sexually transmitted. Yaws mainly affects children in rural, warm, tropical areas, such as the Caribbean Islands, Latin America, West Africa, India, and Southeast Asia.
Yaws is transmitted by direct contact with the skin sores of infected people.
Review Date : 2/23/2010
Reviewed By : David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Jatin M. Vyas, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Assistant in Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.