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(worried) unprotected anal sex?
Sep 2, 2002

Dr Kull,

I am a man, and I recently had unprotected anal sex. I was the (bottom) with an older man in his sixies. He assured me he was HIV negative, and was checked every six months. We had sex twice, and it was my first experience with a man. He was very well to do in life, gentle, honest and open with me. I believed and trusted him at the time, because of that. Now I cant help but worry, because I was stupid, for acting out this sexual fantasy. Does anal sex alone with an hiv neg partner cause HIV? and What are the Hiv possibilities for a gay man in his sixties? he was married to a woman who passed five years ago, and has two children if that helps.

Response from Mr. Kull

First of all, anal sex does not "create" HIV. That's a myth that has no scientific merit. You can only become infected with HIV by being exposed to an HIV infected person's bodily fluids, namely blood, semen, or vaginal secretions (infants are at risk for infection through ingesting HIV infected breastmilk).

Receptive anal sex (being the bottom) without a condom with an HIV infected man poses the greatest risk for infection (within the category of sexual transmission). Men who have sex with men also represent the greatest number of HIV transmission cases in the United States. For these reasons, it is crucial that you use condoms as often as possible for anal sex, especially if you are unsure of your partners' HIV status.

Trust in and comfort with your sexual partners is important. It's great that you talked with your partner about his HIV status, and knowing something about your partners is better than not knowing at all. You do need to consider some other things when having sex with your partners. Sometimes people do not know they are infected with HIV because of recent exposure or being tested within the window period. It's likely that transmission often occurs during this early stage of infection. You also need to be on the lookout for other sexually transmitted infections. For these reasons, condom use is important even when you do know or trust your partners.

Negotiating safer sex can be difficult, and for reasons that are too complicated to go into here, some people have a harder time at it than others. If you find that it's hard to use condoms with partners, consider talking with friends, professionals, groups, etc., so that you can begin to learn strategies to better protect yourself.

RMK



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