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Still with in 24 hours of potential exposure; Please help

Jan 12, 2010

Hello Doc, I'm 30 yr old male. I had unprotected sex with a 36 yr old divorcee who claimed that she got a divorce from an alcoholic husband. According to her, her husband also had an affair with another woman. I have known her only from last two weeks and met her only once before this accident. So I don't know her HIV status and cannot ask her too. We indulged in mutual oral sex and vaginal penetration(how I wish I coud avoid that). I have always known it's too risky doing without a condom, but just before I thought of penetrating I lost erection, so I feared that I can't get it up with a condom. I could not complete the act inside her, thanks to a telephone call. Then I came back to my senses and recollected her background, so sent her back promptly telling her that the call came from my office and I had to get back to work. I was inside her for about 4 mins. I never had a history of STDs so don't have any cuts or wounds on my penis. Please tell me what are my chances of not getting infected assuming she is infected? Do I only hope that she's not infected? Is it worth taking PEP without knowing her status. Please advise. P.S: I am happy to donate for your Foundation, I am so glad that I found your site after hours of search on the web.

Response from Dr. Frascino


Unprotected sex does place you at some degree of risk for STDs, including HIV. The CDC's estimated per-act statistical risk for acquiring HIV from unprotected insertive penile-vaginal sex with a partner confirmed to be HIV infected is 5 per 10,000 exposures. Your statistical risk estimate would be significantly less, because we do not know the HIV status of your divorcee.

PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) is generally only recommended for significant HIV exposures. Your potential exposure is questionable at best. Most HIV specialists would probably not recommend PEP for this level of risk. HIV testing at the three-month mark is all that would be recommended. The odds of your not contracting HIV from this sexcapade are all in your favor. You can read about many similar situations in the archives of this forum.

Thank you for your tax-deductible donation to The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation ( It's warmly appreciated. In return I'm sending you my good-luck karma that your definitive three-month HIV test will be negative.

Good luck. Be well.

Dr. Bob

PEP and HIV Test Accuracy

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