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"HIV oral/genital contaction..chances?"

Sep 5, 1996

Is it possible to contract the HIV virus by having oarl sex with a man even if he does not ejaculate? and what are the chances of getting it in that manner?

Response from Dr. Cohen

HIV is contained in preseminal fluid ("precum") which is present before ejaculation in many men. Therefore, it is theoretically possible to become infected through oral sex even if it ends before ejaculation. The risk of HIV transmission from oral sex is low compared to anal or vaginal sex, but it's not zero. There have been documented cases of transmission through oral sex. I doubt that there would be any way to to prove that transmission had taken place through contact with preseminal fluid, however, so it remains just a theoretical possibility.

You ask "what are the chances." I'm afraid there's just no way to accurately quantify the risk of transmission through oral sex-- with or without ejaculation. You can imagine how difficult it would be to do that-- you'd have to take people who had become infected and who ONLY had oral sex (not a very big number) and compare them to uninfected people who only had oral sex, and then try to figure out how many times they had done it and try to come up with a number. Then, imagine how much more difficult it would be if you were trying to look at the risk of transmission if no ejaculation occured. Not a research project I'd want to carry out.

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