What is the probability of HIV transmission from one episode of unprotected vaginal intercourse?
Jul 22, 2012
Dear Dr. Cordova,
About 5 weeks ago, I was having sex with a girl I met at a bar and my condom broke. I realized this had happened only after I pulled out. As a consequence I have been increasingly worried about having contracted HIV during these weeks. I found some blood blotches in my arm the other ay, and I have experienced a lack of energy and cold like symptoms (although no swollen lymph nodes). After I asked the girl whether she knew her HIV status, she told me that she hasn't been tested for HIV, but that she donates blood constantly and that since the Red Cross tests the blood they receive and she has not received a call from them, she knows she is HIV negative. I don't know if this is certain proof that she is HIV negative, or whether there is still a probability that she might be HIV positive. I understand that I might be overreacting... but I would really appreciate if you could guide me in this matter. What is the probability that I contracted HIV from this instance? Should I get tested? Thank you...
Response from Mr. Cordova
The risk from this particular situation is fairly low. A one-time incident of insertive vaginal sex is not the highest risk situation. Blood banks do screen for the presence of HIV. If there was HIV present in the blood that she donated, they would have contacted her.
I would suggest an HIV test at the three month mark, just to be safe.
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