The Italian, Polish and German people called it the “French disease”.
The French called it the “Italian disease”.
The Dutch called it the “Spanish disease”.
The Russians called it the “Polish disease”.
The Turks called it the “Christian disease”.
The Tahitians called it the “British disease”.
(For the Wagnerists, it would be the “Jewish disease”).
So, it is evident what “syphilis” meant empirically: nationalism, xenophobia, scapegoating, resentment, bad conscience, negation, reaction, revenge, guilt, bitterness, etc.
On other hand, etymologically, “syphilis” can be derived from “sy-” (one, the whole as singularity) + “philia” (affection), therefore, being a synonym of “affection for the whole”.
Undoubtedly, it is the kind of “infection” that Nietzsche could acquire “twice” (“[Patient] Gibt an, daß er sich zweimal specifisch inficiert habe”, in the medical report from Basel asylum, 10 January 1889), but so different each time: in the first time, he could have been subject to contagion by the nationalists Wagner and his wife; in the second time, through the intercession of Lou Salomé (who he characterized as simius/simil/simulacre – “Diese dürre schmutzige übelriechende Affin mit ihren falschen Brüsten — ein Verhängniß!”, letter to Georg Rée, July 1883, n. 435, Briefe 6 in Sämtliche Briefe), he was infected to the point of giving birth to Zarathrusta (simultaneously, Wagner dies). But this was a purer syphilis.