Are Condoms Effective As Protection Against AIDS Transmission
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies condoms as "medical devices"; therefore regulates them. U.S.A.
manufacturers who make condoms must perform tests ensuring they are not defective (contain holes).
When condoms are used during sexual intercourse (either anal, oral or vaginal); it can
reduce the risk of receiving or transmitting diseases including HIV infection. Only latex or polyurethane
condoms provide a highly mechanical barrier that is effective against the HIV virus.
Other types of condoms cannot provide this protection; so you have to be careful that for the protection against
AIDS virus during sexual intercourse that you use the latex or polyurethane condoms and not the "skin or lambskin"
condoms. Maximum protection can only be realized when condoms are used each and every time you have intercourse.
Studies have shown that latex condom's have a 2% breakage rate in the U.S.A. so even the latex condoms are
not 100% protection.
A survey showed that fifty percent of men surveyed feel that condom usage decreases sexual pleasure for them.
This could contribute to the practice of inconsistently using condoms that could result in increased risk for HIV
virus transmission. Studies have shown that education concerning condom use; attitude and also usage have a lot of
influence on the effectiveness of the condom to protect against the spread of the AIDS virus. Experts believe that
of the two-thirds who have AIDS in the United States because of having sex with an infected partner many of them
could have avoided this deadly disease if only they had used a latex condom.
It is especially important to use the protection that a condom brings if you are a pregnant woman having sex
because if the woman received the AIDS virus her unborn baby is also at risk for AIDS. It is important to know
that, as condoms are the only birth control that protects against sexually transmitted diseases like AIDS.
Did You Know?
The best and most certain way of not getting HIV or AIDS is to avoid contact with
body fluids from an infected person. Contact can occur during homosexual or heterosexual
Body fluids find an opening in the body and the infection is passed to another
person. The virus can get into the vagina, anus, mouth, and eyes. A person with an open cut or
wound can allow the virus into their body. If you are in the medical profession, it is urgent you
take precautions while handling patients. Gloves, masks, and goggles are necessary to protect from
accidental infection of the HIV virus.
Research on the HIV virus and the disease of AIDS has been continuing since the
early 1980’s. The epidemic is growing and scientists and researchers are constantly working on
vaccines and new therapies for AIDS and other HIV associated conditions.
There are over 30 HIV vaccines that are being tested on humans, and there are many
other drugs for HIV or AIDS related infections that are still being developed and tested by major
Researchers are still trying to trace how the disease progresses and how it damages
the immune system.
It is wise to use a condom especially if you participate in any risky sexual behavior like:
Having multiple sexual partners
Having same sex partners
Having sex with someone who shared needles with someone who has AIDS
Past Sexual partners that the person you are having sex with may be infected with AIDS
You are unsure of your sexual partner whether or not they have AIDS or have been exposed to AIDS
The use of condoms will not guarantee that you won’t be infected with the AIDS virus during intercourse but it will
be less risky. The only really safe sex, is no sex.
Why are condoms only 98% effective against the AIDS virus?
1. There is a 2% breakage rate, therefore 98% effective rate.
2. A condom’s purpose is to act as a barrier against blood, semen and vaginal fluids being able to pass from
one partner to the other during intercourse.
You can’t get the virus by breathing the same air as an AIDS patient. It is not an
You can only get the infection by coming into direct contact with body fluids of a
person who has the HIV virus.
What to look for when purchasing condoms
Make sure you read the package to see what kind of condoms they are. You want latex condoms. Make sure the package
actually says that the condoms are designed to prevent disease. Price does not dictate effectiveness. "Novelty"
type condoms are usually for sexual pleasure and are not designed for disease protection.