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sex with a condom

Dec 17, 1996

Hie, I recently had sex with a stranger, but the good thing is that I made sure I used a condom. After the act I checked the condom, and it seemed to be ok. I then urinated and cleaned my hands and penis with soap just to make sure no germs remained behind. My qusetion is does the Hiv virus have only one point of entry into the penis into the body ie where the urine comes out or can the virus enter through the base of the penis? Should I be tested in 6 months? Thanks

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question.

The HIV virus will enter your bloodstream anywhere it can get into your body. This includes any fresh open cuts, sores, abrasions etc. Places where there are mucous membranes (eyes, nose, mouth, penis, vagina, rectum) are much more likely to have cuts/abrasions, since the linings of mucous membranes are very thin, and abrade very easily. These cuts/abrasions can be too small to see, but large enough for HIV to enter. The head of the penis is a mucous membrane, so HIV can enter through small cuts/abrasions here. Also, if you were to have another Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) that can lead to open lesions (for example Herpes, syphilis, genital warts etc.), HIV can enter through these lesions and infect you. So depending on where these lesions are located can determine where HIV will have an access to your bloodstream.

Assuming you used the condom correctly, your risk would be small. The decision to get tested rests with you. But using condoms consistently and cor rectly will significantly reduce your risk of infection with HIV and other STD's.

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



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