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Transmission Risk

Apr 18, 2006

Dr. Bob,

I have been in a three month relationship with a HIV+ person. I am HIV-, and to date we have only engaged in deep kissing, mutual masturbation, and oral sex (him receiving without me wearing a condom). Although the ladder had only occurred three times, I realize this was a risky behavior and plan to use condoms in the future. We are open communicators and in a committed relationship. My question is how risky was this behavior and when, if at all, should I get tested. I recently was tested as a part of a physical and was HIV-. However this was only weeks after the last time we had oral sex. He is going to be starting MEDS in a month as he was only diagonosed at the beginning of our relationship. However when I found out his viral load was 60,000 I began to worry about the three times I engaged in this type of oral sex. What is your opinion and testing timeframes? I have read 2, 3, and 6 months after possible exposure and am a but confused. Thanks for all you good work, I so appreciate this resource and so does my boyfriend whom I know has used this site for information.

Response from Dr. Frascino


The risk of HIV transmission via oral sex is remarkably low. It is even lower for the insertive partner. The estimated per-act risk for acquiring HIV from unprotected oral insertive sex with a partner confirmed to be HIV positive is 0.5 per 10,000 exposures. This estimated risk is so low that many consider it negligible.

Regarding HIV testing for these types of minimal-risk exposures, a single test at the three-month mark is all that would be required for a definitive result. Many HIV experts would advise the risk is so small that testing isn't even warranted. Whether you test is up to you. The important information is that your risk is extremely low and the testing option is always available to you.

Good luck with your new magnetic relationship. Take a read through the archives of this forum pertaining to magnetic couples (serodiscordant couples). I hope your relationship is as enduring, fulfilling and passion-filled as mine has been with Steve (Dr. Steve, the expert in The Body's Tratamientos forum.)

Stay well.

Dr. Bob

What is more risky?
Simply NUTS! 3rd try for you to call me nuts! Please Doc!

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