How are you doing? I was just wondering about something. I know you say that if a condom doesn't break and is used properly then the risk is non-existent. Why do other Web sites say differently? I trust your opinion, so can you clarify this inconsistency of information? Sincerely, Response from Dr. Frascino Hi Joe, Unfortunately I cannot explain what other people might be thinking or how they might be interpreting or misinterpreting scientific data. What I can do is try to explain the scientific facts and let you draw your own conclusions, OK?
You ask if there has ever been a "confirmed" case of HIV transmission while properly using a latex condom. The answer would be a qualified "no. What we have confirmed in the laboratory, as opposed to the boudoir, is that HIV cannot permeate intact latex. Consequently the advice I give involves a very carefully constructed qualifying phrase: If the latex condom is used properly and doesn't break, the HIV-transmission risk would be essentially nonexistent.
I'll post below some information about condom efficacy from the archives. Hopefully this will further clarify any inconsistencies. They say that it still possible to get HIV.
I know people who have slept with over 60 people and they never got anything using a condom. So whats the real deal? Frascino I've addressed this topic numerous times before and have nothing new to add.
Frascino Hello, You don't have a "queston," but rather a statement. You're a "senoir" in "hight" school???? Your many essays and 11th grade report on safe sex found that there are "tiny tears in condoms that are not big enough for sperm to pass, but viruses can. Consequently, you think I should better "infor" people on this subject. Do I have that correct????? OK, I'm delighted you have taken an interest in learning about safe r sex, including the use of condoms.
However, if I graded your report, you would have flunked, because you did not use scientifically reliable sources for your information. I strongly urge you to go back and check your sources and your facts, not to mention your spelling and grammar! HIV and other viruses, such as hepatitis, cannot permeate intact latex or polyurethane. Condoms do not have tiny tears that allow HIV to pass through!!!
I'll repost one item from the archives below. You can find many more by doing a simple search and following the related links. I'd advise steering clear of links to The Vatican or anything having to do with Fox News or any Bush Administration faith-based, science-phobic position papers on this topic, OK?
Finally, since you are still in high school, let me leave you with a quote form Mark Twain: It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.
Get the real facts. These last days there had been a lot of "bad information" circulating on the net about, the fact that the holes in the latex condom, are about times bigger than an HIV particle, so the virus could pass the intact condom. I think, and i believe i read that in an paper that althoug the hole could be times bigger than a virus particule, at that level of interaction, the electromagnetic forces, make imposible for the particle to pass the intact latex.
Unfortunately I coulnd't find any demonstration about this fact on the net, and my math or knowledge in molecular biology it's not enought to prove it.
Thanks for your comments and sorry about my english. The bad info sometimes is worse than no info. Frascino Hello, You are correct the information about holey condoms is "bad information" often generated and perpetuated by the holiest of holies, the Vatican.
Religion obviously is based solely on beliefs, be they virgin births, walking on water, Adam and Steve I mean Eve , etc. Science and common sense sometimes get in the way of these belief systems the science of evolution versus the belief of creationism, etc.
Unfortunately we have this type of problem with condoms. Anti-science religions, like the Catholic Church, believe that condoms are nothing more than Swiss cheese. Science, on the other hand, has confirmed repeatedly that HIV cannot permeate intact latex. The concept that condoms have holes is a myth that has been disproved on numerous occasions.
The Vatican and other rightwing religious sex-phobic wingnuts , however, continues to "believe" their fantasy. Actually, it's hard for me to really accept that they actually truly believe this obvious fallacy, but they most likely continue to promote it because it fits in nicely with their other agendas. I'll post some information form the archives that addresses the efficacy of condoms. You can also find much more information on this topic in the archives.
Yes, there is "bad information" out there; however, focusing on the scientifically sound information will mitigate and hopefully eventually eliminate myths in favor of truth, fact and common sense. Watch for a swing back toward science, truth and reality once Dubya and his cronies have been tarred, feathered and run out of town.
One small victory this week was the crushing defeat of the Religious Right's poster boy, Ralph Reed, in his bid to become lieutenant governor of Georgia. I have always had protective anal sex - no condoms breaking. I have heard I am at close to zero risk - but this doctor "chic" on The Today show freaked me out. Can you add to this? Frascino Hi, No need to freak out. HIV cannot permeate intact latex. Using the wrong kind of condom. Natural lamb's skin condoms do not protect against HIV. This is a biggy!
You'd be amazed how many studs just don't know how to dress for success! It's rare, but it can happen, especially if one is stingy with the lube. I'll post some questions from the archives below that address condom efficacy. The "doctor chick" on the Today Show seems to be a bit of an alarmist. Chances are she voted for Dubya and his sex-phobic anti-science cronies. Stay safe and you'll stay well. Bob What's the story with those new condoms? Apr 3, Hey Dr Bob Thanks for answering our questions.
Recently I bought a Trojan condom and what I found written on it frightened me a lot. That seemed a little bit in contradiction to what I have read from your archives here. Does this mean that those of us who had protected sex with people of unknown status should go for tests? Thanks Doc Response from Dr. I'll repost a question from earlier today that addressed condom efficacy. Bob not another hypothetical risk question Apr 3, Hi Dr Bob: After finding out that my bf was HIV positive, I've been a regular in this great site, mining for as much information as I can find and process.
I understand people's fears, but somehow I grow tired of the "5 years ago I touched a handkerchief that a prostitute had used to wipe her butt, I washed my hands with bleach times after that and my ELISA, western and PCR came back negative 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after that, what should I do?
So here are my questions, from a neg. I guess not, but what do they actually mean? Thank you so much for the amazing site, it goes to show that information is power. Frascino Hi, Gosh, if you think you're tired of the "touched a hooker's hankie" type of question, you can just imagine how I must feel as I wade through literally thousands of such questions on a continual basis day after day. So let's proceed to your magnetic couple questions: The bottom line here is that HIV cannot pass through intact latex.
Condom statistics like all statistics can be a bit misleading. I'll repost below a few questions from the archives that address the condom-efficacy question. Now let me show you an example of how statistics can be misleading in a very Republican-NRA sort of way. Consider the following stats: The number of doctors in the U. The number of gun owners in the U. The most direct evidence supporting the efficacy of PEP is a case-control study of needlestick injuries to health care workers.
In the nonoccupational arena we have data from observational studies and registries. Although data from observational studies and case reports may not provide definitive evidence of PEP's efficacy in nonoccupational exposures, the overall cumulative data is so convincing that it would now be considered unethical to run a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of PEP to scientifically verify what has now become standard of care for most HIV specialist practices. I would suggest you print out a copy of the recommendations from the U.
That depends on your level of risk. For instance, some magnetic couples don't use condoms for oral sex , some may not use condoms "properly" each and every time, etc. Consequently the answer to how often I would recommend that you be tested would depend on a variety of variables. But remember, the option of testing is always open to you if you feel there has been a potential exposure.
Yes, information is indeed power.