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QTND (I guess)
Mar 12, 2009

Hey Dr. B,

Thank you for your help and support to all of us out there. You are the man...

Question: Why is it that when men tell you that they've had protected vaginal sex with a person of unknown HIV status, you tell them that testing is "unwarranted"? But then sometimes, you recommend that they get tested anyway at the three month period?

Again, thank you! Your forum is excellent...how can I donate?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Not sure if your general query would qualify as a QTND (question that never dies), but the specific answer to your question is indeed contained in each of my individual responses! Take a closer look!

Basically "protected" sex is indeed protected, assuming the latex (or polyurethane) condom was used properly and did not fail (break). HIV cannot permeate intact latex (or polyurethane). No way. No how. Consequently this risk would be so low that testing would not be warranted. However, not everyone uses condoms properly (in fact many folks do not!) and rarely condoms can break. Therefore if folks had "protected" sex, but aren't sure if they used the condoms properly, they should get tested. Also, sometimes even if HIV testing is not medically warranted, it may help psychologically, particularly if someone has irrational fears of being infected despite essentially no risk.

Donation information for the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation can be found on the foundation's Web site at www.concertedeffort.org.

Dr. Bob



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