Vaginal Secretions

Question

Hi Rick, I heard that if you expose to small amount of vaginal secretions, it can't cause HIV infection. Is it true? Thanks!

Answer

Hi. Thank you for your question. We do not know the minimum quantity of any body fluid (vaginal secretions, blood, semen, etc.) that is required for HIV infection to occur. All anybody can say is that the more infectious body fluids a person is exposed to, the greater the chance that infection will occur (if that body fluid has a direct access to the bloodstream). So we can say that if you are exposed to a very small amount of vaginal secretions, the risk is less than if you are exposed to large amounts of vaginal secretions. The same prinicpals apply for blood and semen. Nobody can quantify ones risk other than to say, the more infectious body fluids one is exposed to, the greater the risk becomes. If you have any further questions, please feel free to call the Centers for Disease Control at 1.800.232.4636 (Nationwide).