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Getting AIDS from Insect bites???

Feb 14, 1997

My friend and I were discussing whether or not you could contract AIDS or HIV from pubic lice or (Crabs)? She believes that lice live on blood , so there for bite humans to feed and make under the skin contact with the person that has them. so

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question.

In regard to pubic lice (and mosquitoes, ticks and other biting insects), they cannot transmit HIV for the following reasons:

HIV cannot live outside the human body for more than a few minutes. Insects (pubic lice, mosquitoes, ticks and other biting insects) don't bite one person then hop onto the next. Instead it's usually days or longer between biting one person and then the next. HIV would be long dead before a any of these insects would bite another person. Unlike Malaria and other insect-borne diseases, HIV has not evolved the capability of surviving in any insect.

It is a common myth that when you get bitten by a mosquito and other insects, that they inject blood into you. This isn't true. Therefore you are never exposed to the blood of other people through any biting insect.

There's lots of data showing that the patterns of spread of diseases transmitted by biting insects, is totally different from the pattern of spread of the HIV virus. Malaria and other diseases spread by insects strike anyone living in a given area who are exposed to those insects. However, HIV only strikes people engaging in specific activities like sexual activities, needle sharing etc.

So all the data proves that HIV cannot be spread by any biting insect. We have over 15 years of worldwide data showing absolutely no evidence of any insect transmission at all.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to call the Centers for Disease Control at 1.800.232.4636 (Nationwide).

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