Followup to "Mutual j/o with some hiv+ semen present on uncircumcized penis"
Feb 17, 2010
Thank you Dr. for the prompt reply to my question. It went a long way defusing my fears, and I will do my part following up on your advice to get tested 3 months from now, which is I think also the general recommendation to do from time to time for sexually active people.
Just as a suggestion to you and other experts I think it would be useful to clarify what "theoretic" risk means, which I think is that it *may* happen, but only few or no real documented cases of infections ever occured that way, out of (unfortunately) tens of millions of infections so far. In this particular case I was reading about the theoretical risk that the virus can be absorbed through mucuous membranes on the penis, but for somebody not in medical field it is difficult to find out if mucuous membrane is just inside the urethra (how deep?), or is it the surface of the glans, or if the latter if there is some difference there between circumcised and uncircumcised penis, the length of time or the amount of hiv+ semen to stay there etc. So I think such uncertanties are then easy breeding ground (pun intended LOL) to imagine all sorts of risk and fears for the HIV anxiety to take hold.
PS. I have also submitted my donation to your worthy organization! Too bad I am not closer to hear some of the piano recitals too!
Response from Dr. Frascino
HIV can permeate mucous membranes. This is not theoretical; it's a well-documented scientific fact. The entire urethra (pee slit) is lined with a mucous membrane. The surface of the glans and the foreskin are not mucous membranes. The inside surface of the foreskin does contain specialized cells that have receptors for HIV and could play a role in HIV transmission. You can read much more about this topic and other aspects of HIV sexual transmission in the archives of this forum.
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