[Question #4096] Condom Failure

32 months ago

I am a female whom had intercourse on May 19 and July 22. I am unsure how, but by bad luck, the condom broke both instances. Both episodes lasted no longer than ten minutes, I'm not sure at what point the condoms broke, but my partner did not ejaculate inside of my body either time. I did ask his status and he stated he is negative for all STIS. It was just recently that I learned he is in a relationship with a known HIV positive person. I believe she has had it for a long time and am hoping she is on treatment. I am very anxious because in the interim I had unprotected intercourse with my regular partner.  I have read many responses on your forum that state to wait six weeks for conclusive results. I have a few questions that I hope will ease the anxiety of waiting.

1. What are the odds that I actually caught anything from these two exposures?

2. My PCP states I will need to follow up between 4-6 months. Will my results change past six weeks?

3. It has been 20 days since my last exposure, am I out of a symptom period?

4. Would it be your professional suggestion that I test given the risk involved?


Thank you.

Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
32 months ago
Welcome to our Forum.  I'll do my best to help.  I understand how disconcerting an exposure of this sort can be.  Before I answer your question with some statistics, let me point out that if your partner does not have HIV, you cannot get it. Thus the most immediate way to be sure that he doesn't have HIV (or any other STI for that matter) is for you both to get checked together.  If no STIs, including HIV are detected, you are in the clear without further waiting.  Further, if this is going to be an ongoing relationship, it's a great trusting way to get things started.

1. What are the odds that I actually caught anything from these two exposures?

The likelihood of transmission varies depending on the STI that you were exposed to.  The data are best at the two extremes,   For gonorrhea, if your partner had infection there is a 20-40% chance that you were infected at each exposure.  For HIV the risk is much, much lower- only 1 our of 1000-2000 sexual exposures to infected partners lead to infection. 

2. My PCP states I will need to follow up between 4-6 months. Will my results change past six weeks?

Your PCP is being a bit conservative.  You can be tested for other STIS like gonorrhea any time more than3-4 days after exposure.  For HIV, your results will be definitive at 6 weeks. 

3. It has been 20 days since my last exposure, am I out of a symptom period?

Sorry, no.  The symptoms of recently acquired HIV typically occur at 2-3 weeks but they can appear up to a month after exposure- unlikely however.

4. Would it be your professional suggestion that I test given the risk involved?

Yes.


I hope these comments are helpful.  If any of this is unclear, please do not hesitate to ask for clarification in your up to two follow-up questions.  EWH

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32 months ago
Thank you for the prompt response. I am even more anxious than before given the fact that the man in question insists he doesn't have anything and has cut off communication.  Given the fact that there was no ejaculation inside of my body, does that slightly lower the risk of 1-1,000-2,000? I am beyond nervous and now know I will be counting the days for the next week checking myself for symptoms. I am trying to stay calm and off the internet, but this is very concerning to me.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
32 months ago
I'm sorry to hear that your partner is behaving this way.  The absence of ejaculation is likely to reduce your risk for infection although this subject is poorly researched.  Remember however, the odds are very much infected- your risk is less than 1/10th of 1% IF he was infected.  EWH 
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32 months ago
I think less than 1/10 of 1% is understandable. I am however confusedd by the statement "remember, the odds are very much infected" that is a little concerning. Thank you for your help
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
32 months ago
Sorry that was a typo.  We've had a high volume of posts today and I was typing fast and, perhaps, not proof reading as well as I should.  EWH
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32 months ago
So to end the thread, are you saying the odds are in my favor? Im sorry to be redundant, i just want to be assured im understanding you correctly. Thank you. 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
32 months ago
I would say it a bit more strongly- the odds are very much in your favor.  I understand that the scenario was/is disconcerting.  I hope the information I've provided has been helpful.  EWH 
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