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Statistics?
Oct 14, 2010

Hello, doctor!

First, I'd like to congratulate you and the rest of this website's team. Incredible job!

Second, the issue: I've read several times that in the worst possible case of HIV transmission (anal intercourse with positive insertive partner, high viral load and still no meds) there was a chance of 1.7% (roughly).

Still, against the statistics, there are a lot of stories we hear and read mentioning rapes and regular sex encounters that cause infection with only one attempt. I realize that, although 1.7% is LOW, it does NOT mean that the first exposure won't infect.

My question is: I've been exposed ONCE by accident (condom broke, and the details match the higher risk case I mentioned) a little more then a month ago. Should I apply that 1.7% chance to my case (thus, granting me greater peace of mind) or I misread the studies (and my risk is higher than that)?

thanks for you attention, doctor!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Population statistics really can't be applied to a single encounter, as each coupling is unique and there are many variables involved, including viral strain, viral load, host immunity, concurrent infections, etc. The bottom line is that if you had a potential exposure, you need an HIV-antibody test outside the window period.

Good luck!

Dr. Bob



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