Between 1932 and 1972, the US Public Health Service conducted a clinical study on rural African American men who had contracted syphilis. The Public Health Service never informed these men they had a sexually transmitted disease, nor did they offer treatment, even after penicillin became available as a cure in the 1940s.
Tragically, it’s true. Rather than receiving treatment, the subjects of these studies were told they had “bad blood.”When World War II began, 250 of the men registered for the draft and were only then, for the first time, informed they had syphilis. Even then, the PHS denied them treatment.
By the early 1970s, 128 of the original 399 men had died of syphilis and syphilis-related complications, 40 of their wives had the disease and 19 of their children were born with congenital syphilis.
Worth pointing out: A similar experiment conducted on prisoners, soldiers, and patients of a mental hospital in Guatemala actually involved the PHS deliberately infecting the patients and then treating them with antibiotics. source: theantimedia.org