Sexual Activities Other Than Intercourse Carry Risk of HIV, Other STIs, Study Finds
September 4, 2008
Sexual activities other than intercourse carry some risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, according to a report from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists published recently in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, Reuters reports. An ACOG expert committee said that although many people engage in "noncoital" sexual activities -- such as oral sex, mutual masturbation and anal sex -- in an attempt to prevent pregnancy and reduce the risk of STIs, these sex acts still come with varying degrees of STI risk, and it is important for people to protect themselves.
In the report, the panel advises physicians to ask both adult and teenage patients about all of their sexual activities and to counsel them on how to reduce the risk of STIs. Guido said that although this "is a sensitive issue to address for both patients and physicians, it's important to discuss frankly and without judgment so that we can help our patients fully protect themselves" against STIs. The panel also recommends "correct and consistent" condom use for all types of sexual activity, but particularly for vaginal and anal sex. Other ways to curb STI transmission include staying in a mutually monogamous relationship and getting tested for STIs before starting a new relationship, the panel said (Reuters, 9/2).
The study is available online.
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.