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Nurse Susan
Nurse Susan, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1086
Experience:  RN, BSN, MSN-ED, Nurse Educator whose passion is helping people understand their health and wellness
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I have not been in the dating world for a long time. Can you

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I have not been in the dating world for a long time. Can you become HIV infected from oral sex with a women who turns out to be HIV? Also, if she is a squirter is this an issue to swallow that liquid?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Nurse Susan replied 2 years ago.
Hello JACustomer,

I can understand your concerns about HIV and its transmission, and I hope I can allieviate your fears and give you some guidance and information on this issue.

I dont know what you already know about HIV; I will presume you know little about it so please forgive me if I tell you what you already know.

HIV is a virus that causes the immune system to essentially break down, and without a working immune system to protect against disease, people with AIDS (What HIV is called when it advances) tend to get many different types of illnesses which can be hard to treat. The HIV virus is found it body fluids like semen, vaginal fluids, and blood, and the more of the virus there is in the blood or semen, the more likely it is for HIV to be passed to another. The amount of virus in blood is called the "viral load". HIV can only be passed if enough of the virus enters your body through a break in your skin/ mucous membranes. (Mucous membranes are tissues that line body cavities, like the eyes, mouth, intestines). The HIV virus does not survive long outside the body, in room air or on surfaces.

Saliva, by itself, has not been known to have caused a single case of HIV transmission. There have been some rare cases where people with bloody saliva passed HIV to others, and that is due to the blood in it. Intact skin is also felt to be a barrier to HIV. In fact, the CDC 2003 guidelines for health care workers say that if skin is intact,

"A small amount of blood on intact skin probably poses no risk at all. There have been no documented cases of HIV transmission due to an exposure involving a small amount of blood on intact skin (a few drops of blood on skin for a short period of time)."

So, onto your specific question. Yes, if you had oral sex with a woman who was HIV+, there would be HIV virus present in her vaginal fluid. But, assuming your mouth had no cuts, the risk of transmission is actually pretty low. The CDC statistics there state that if 10,000 HIV+ people had receptive oral intercourse with 10,000 people who were not HIV+, only ONE of those people would get HIV. If 10,000 HIV+ people had insertive oral intercourse with 10,000 who were not HIV+, only 0.5 would get HIV.

But that is still a risk: you may have open sores in your mouth of which you are not aware. And if the woman has her period, the viral load of vaginal fluid and menstral blood would be somewhat higher, making it more risky. Whether she has a squirting orgasm makes little difference in HIV transmission UNLESS you had an open sore upon your face. Swallowing it as well is the same. While HIV does die pretty quickly in room air, the time frame we are speaking of here in oral sex makes it likely any HIV would be active if squirting fluids were on your face.

HIV tests are a good idea but they are not perfect. That is because there is a window period between the time one is infected with HIV and the time it shows up on a test. A person could have gotten HIV a week ago, and then taken a HIV test that shows a negative test NOT because the person doesnt have HIV but because simply not enough time had elapsed for there to be a positive test. This window period is about three months. The time between exposure to any virus and symptoms is referred to as the incubation period. (HIV is a bit off in that a person can have HIV for years and not have symptoms, that is because it can take years for someones immune system to be so damaged by the virus that they get the many illnesses associated with AIDS)

If you are going to have sex of any type, protection is a good idea to avoid any STD, not just HIV. Dental dams can be used in oral sex to lessen the chances of HIV transmission. Latex and Vinyl condoms do the same (lambskin ones do NOT protect against HIV). Note that dental dams and condoms only protect the area they cover. If someone had a herpes lesion outside of the area covered by the condom or dental damn, you could get herpes if you are in contact with the lesion. Use only one condom, some people mistakenly believe using two at once gives double protection; instead it increases the risk of tears and breaks, increasing your chances of getting an STD, including HIV.

Some web site references:
General HIV information here: http://www.webmd.com/hiv-aids/default.htm

The CDC chart of which I quoted earlier: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5402a1.htm#tab1

2003 CDC guidelines pdf: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dhqp/pdf/bbp/Exp_to_Blood.pdf

And this on exposure http://www.hivmedicine.com/textbook/pep.htm

And one more on STDs in general, with their signs, symptoms, and incubation periods

I hope I was able to help and put your mind at ease....and I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX have wonderful times dating again and meet that special someone.

Sincerely,
Susan

Nurse Susan, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1086
Experience: RN, BSN, MSN-ED, Nurse Educator whose passion is helping people understand their health and wellness
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Nurse Susan
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RN, BSN, MSN-ED, Nurse Educator whose passion is helping people understand their health and wellness