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Spermicides/Vagicides
Jul 2, 1997

Dr. Rick, Are there over-the-counter vagicides/spermides that will de-activate/kill the HIV Virus and other STDs. I read somewhere that testing was being conducted. Thanks

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question. Presently, there are several over-the-counter spermicides (and spermicide containing lubricants) that have a LIMITED effectiveness against HIV and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD's). Nonoxynol-9 is a good example of such a spermicide. However, these spermicides MUST ALWAYS be used along with a condom; by themselves, they do NOT offer adequate protection against HIV and other STD's. Their primary use is to offer a limited amount of extra protection, should the condom break, leak, or fall off. Some people are allergic to some spermicides. If you are allergic to a spermicide, it is best not to use lubricants and other products containing that spermicide. There are lubricants sold on the market that do not contain spermicides (original K-Y is a good example of a lubricant without spermicides). Even if a spermicide is not used, as long as a condom is used every time and used correctly, it should offer good protection against HIV and other STD's.

There have been reports of new spermicides undergoing clinical trials for use in preventing HIV and other STD's. Since those clinical trials have yet not been completed, I cannot comment on their safety or effectiveness.

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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