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Is Using a condom enough protection?

Mar 4, 1998

i am an hiv positive women . is using a condom enough protection for my partner?

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question. Latex condoms, used every time and used correctly, will significantly reduce the risk of transmission for HIV and other STDs. However, condoms are not 100% protection. There are ways that you can further reduce the risk of transmission when using condoms:

1) Make sure that you are using condoms correctly, by reading the instructions that come with the box. Condoms will not adequately prevent transmission if they are not used correctly.

2) Make sure that you use a lot of a water-based lubricant when having intercourse, to reduce the chance of the condom breaking.

3) If you wish, you can use a condom and/or a lubricant which contains Nonoxynol-9. However keep in mind that Nonoxynol-9 only offers a very limited amount of additional protection.

There are, of course, many sexual activities that do not involve intercourse, that are low risk for HIV transmission. Examples of these activities include mutual masturbation, body massage, kissing, etc.

In summary, the key element in preventing the transmission of HIV during intercourse is the consistent and correct use of condoms.

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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