Sep 20, 2008
Dr Bob, Now in this era of HIV, everybody knows that condoms save, how come so many people are getting infected every day ? regards
| Response from Dr. Frascino
I could give you many sociological reasons condoms are not used to prevent HIV infections, such as:
1. Condom fatigue in MSM who have been using them for years. Remember, prior to HIV/AIDS, gay men had as much need for condoms as they did for Midol. Many are just fed up with having to use them now that HIV has become, in their minds, more treatable.
2. Misinformation or lack of information about condom efficacy stemming from Dubya's disastrous abstinence-only sex (mis) education program.
3. Serosorting. People attempting to have sex only with others of the same serostatus. They will often forego condoms while doing this, as they feel the chance of HIV transmission is no longer relevant. (This isn't always true, due to the possibility of superinfection in the HIV positives and to the very real possibility that folks or their partners, who believe they are negative, are, in reality, HIV infected.)
4. The belief that having an undetectable HIV plasma viral load is equivalent to being noninfectious, thus negating the need for condoms. (This also has not been proven to be true.)
However, the most important reason folks don't use condoms to protect themselves is the wide gap between what someone rationally knows and how someone chooses to behave in the height of passion or under the influence of drugs. There is no doubt that if the "No glove. No love. No exceptions." rule was really practiced, HIV infection would drop faster and lower than Bush's approval rating.
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