Follow up question for Lisa Hightow-Weidman

Question

Lisa, thank you for the response to my previous question below. As a follow up to your response that it is impossible for HIV to pass through any fabric, if that is true why then should latex condoms be used vs. other materials? Thx.

HIV & Herpes Mar 22, 2013

I recently had a herpes outbreak that occurs on back of my upper leg, just below the buttock. A couple of days after it healed, I was traveling on business to NY and got an erotic massage by an "escort-type" woman in my hotel room. She stripped down to her underpants and while I lay face down, she sat on my back and gave me a massage. While she did keep her underpants on, I could feel the moisture/heat form her vagina on my body. I did try to keep her from sitting on my recently healed herpes outbreak, but can't be sure that she didn't slide over it with her crotch area. I am worried about what I've read about herpes increasing HIV transmission, even after the skin has healed. Assuming she is HIV positive (I did ask, and she said no - of course), would a non-intercourse contact such as this be risky for acquiring HIV? IF so, I do not want to wait to get tested, and would like to do the RNA test. Is that reliable?

	Response from Dr. Hightow-Weidman

Hello there It is impossible for you to get HIV through underwear. HIV cannot penetrate any layer of fabric. Take care, LHW

Answer

Hello there- Condoms are made of latex for various reasons including their elastic properties and tensile strength (which makes them less likely to break). Condoms can be made of other materials for example in persons with latex allergies. To be protected from acquiring HIV, a condom must be used correctly and current condoms are made to ensure they don't slip off or break and cover the penis completely. Hope that helps. Take care LHW