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am I still contagious?
Jun 22, 2011

Hi, I am hiv+, undetectable viral load, T-cells about 500, which I consider good numbers, especially since I have no aparent symptoms at the moment. I would like to know if, despite these numbers, I can still pass hiv to somebody else if I am the bottom in a sexual relationship with no condom. Are chances high that my active (top) partner get the virus from me?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi.

Are you still contagious despite having an undetectable viral load and high T-cell count? Yes, you are.

It is true that being on effective antiretroviral therapy that decreases HIV plasma viral loads to undetectable levels for a considerable period of time significantly decreases HIV-transmission risk but it does not completely eliminate that risk.

The CDC's estimated per-act statistical risk for acquiring HIV from unprotected insertive anal sex with a partner confirmed to be HIV positive is 6.5 per 10,000 exposures.

The bottom line is that no one should poke your bottom without a latex condom in place.

Dr. Bob



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