I’ve heard condoms can’t prevent the spread of HIV. Is that true?
By Amy @ Planned Parenthood | Aug. 4, 2010, 11:01 a.m.
I’d like to know if it’s true that condoms are not a safe method to avoid getting HIV AIDS. I heard that the size of the virus AIDS is smaller than the spaces of a condom and therefore, it’s possible that people are getting infected even with the use of a condom.
No, it’s not true. HIV is a virus that is carried in blood, semen, and vaginal fluids. None of these substances can pass through an intact latex condom, a polyurethane male condom, or a polyurethane internal condom.
Latex and internal condoms are the most effective way for people who have vaginal and anal intercourse to reduce the risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. While oral sex is not nearly as risky as unprotected intercourse is for HIV, latex barriers can further reduce the risk.
Latex condoms are also up to 98 percent effective against pregnancy when used correctly. Polyurethane male condoms are less effective against pregnancy because they are somewhat more likely to break. Polyurethane internal condoms are up to 95 percent effective against pregnancy.
Some people use animal skin condoms, but they’re not as effective as latex or polyurethane condoms in preventing viral infections like HIV.