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low risk

May 29, 2001

I read your response to the risks involved in receiving oral sex. You said there was a low rist. Does that low risk lie in the fact that there might be some exachange of blood or does it take into account the tranferability of saliva. In other words, theoretically speaking if there was only saliva and no blood, would there be any chance of trasferability?

Response from Mr. Kull

Saliva is not implicated in the transmission of HIV. While HIV can be isolated in the saliva of HIV infected people, there is no evidence that HIV has ever been transmitted through contact with saliva. This can probably be explained by the low concentration of HIV in saliva and certain protective factors in saliva that inactivate HIV.

Please read the response to "Kissing and Infection with HIV" ( If you do a search on The Body with the term "saliva," you'll many responses to questions like yours.


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