STDs Expert Forum
Unprotected Sex
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The STD Forum is intended only for questions and support pertaining to sexually transmitted diseases other than HIV/AIDS, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital warts, trichomonas, other vaginal infections, nongonoccal urethritis (NGU), cervicitis, molluscum contagiosum, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Unprotected Sex


I am 21, and a few nights ago I had unprotected sex for the first time.  It was a one night stand with a girl I met at a bar.  I am quite sure she has had unprotected sex with multiple partners.  I am very worried that I will get an STD from one thoughtless night.  What are the chances that I have gotten an STD from this girl?  How long should I wait to get tested?
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You have participated in just about the riskiest heterosexual practice possible:  unprotected vaginal sex with a person you didn't know who you met in a bar.  This is higher risk, by far, than sex with a prostitute.

Nevertheless, the odds are in your favor.  The likelihood your partner had a transmissible STD at the time you had sex depend on such things as number of partners, how often she uses condoms, her age, what part of the country (or world) you are in, and many other factors that make it impossible to predict the chance she is infected.  But for any single episode of sex, the likelihood of infection is low.  Anyway, most STDs in men cause symptoms that would give you a clue you got infected, and I do not recommend that every person get tested for HIV or other STDs after every episode of sex, unless you know for sure the person is infected.

See a comment I made just a couple days ago, in my reply to Guy in SanFran (thread tittled "Learning Tool" 9/30/05)--about modern paranoia over STD risks.

Bottom line:  You don't need to get tested, unless you develop symptoms that suggest STD.  But if you are unconvinced and want to be tested anyway, have urine tests for gonorrhea and chlamydia and blood tests for HIV and syphilis about 4 weeks after the exposure.  Much more important, just make yourself a pledge to use a condom the next time; and don't select partners at high risk.

Good luck--  HHH, MD
7 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, The doc will respond to you when he can but as a guide until then if you get tested after 2 weeks you will be clear for gonnorhea (Gonorrhea) and chlamydia. for hiv if you get tested after 6 weeks with modern tests that will be reliable.syphillis (syphilis),in the uk is a 3 month test window but i suspect an earlier test (maybe 6 weeks,the doc will advise)will be a reliable result.
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Avatar_n_tn
I totally sympathize with you. I am a 24 year old girl, I had unprotected sex on a first date. I would normally use protection but the guy assured me he was free of std's and he does not strike me as the type to sleep around. stupid yes, but it's not like we are the first ones to do these things.
I have been terrified of hiv. you'd think if we were so scared of these things, we would never do it unprotected but for whatever reasons (heat of the moment) or in my case trusting someone I really don't know all that well.
this was a month ago. I went for a full panel of std tests last Tuesday. all I can do is eat, sleep anxiety of fear.
the doc prescriped me ativan (anti-anxiety) to help me through this time period, so I've been using it to sleep (somehow I find it easier to cope if I just sleep).
just want you to know you're not the only one going through this.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, Doctor.  Hope you're enjoying Seattle weather!  It's HOT over here. :)

Two points:

1.  You said this risk was greater than sex with a prostitute.  Is this because prostitutes (the vast majority of them) take great care to practice very safe sex.  We are talking of course about prostitute who work in establishment where they can control the circumstance.

2.  I saw this posting on the Johns Hopkins Website Q&A with Dr. Gallant.  

   Dr. Gallant responded that he never heard of this question that the person is asking.   Are there many urban legends out there about STD and the facilitation of HIV then??  I mean, if this is a risk, then  I'd be shocked that Dr. Gallant never heard that "if the person performing oral sex on another person was positive for HIV, then the insertier could have been infected because the HIV virus attaches itself to the bacteria of the person performing."  Maybe this is something that is driving all the questions of insertive oral MANY forums everywhere!

<<<Hi Doctor,

I had a oral sex encounter in which I was at the receiving end. A couple of days later I had a slight burning sensation and the opening of my uretha was red and inflamated. By the third day I had discharge and was pretty sure it was either gonorrhea or chlamydia. I went to the doctor and got medication to treat both as well as a test for gonorrhea. I am a bit scare because this is the first time I have ever had a STD after being sexually active as a gay man for 11 years.

A friend told me that if the person performing oral sex on me was positive for HIV, I could have been infected because the HIV virus attaches itself to the bacteria thus infecting me. I have heard that if you already had a STD and were exposed to HIV put you at a greatest risk of being infected, but I never heard anything like what my friend told me.

Your answer would be greatly appreciated. Thank you>>>
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

I'm pretty sure Dr. H will tell you that Dr. Gallant's response was correct. The man who wrote the question to Gallant had heard something which some basis in fact, and misinterpreted it. There is greater HIV risk in oral sex if one of the two parties has an STD like gonorrhea or syphilis, but the risk increased for the sucker, not the suckee. The discharge and white blood cells from open sores or pus, etc., make it easy for the virus to travel using those spots as a portal, so to speak. But there has to be an infectious fluid with large amounts of the HIV to start with, in order for a transmission to happen. For the sucker, the threat is the suckee's semen and precum. For the suckee, the "threat" would be the sucker's saliva, but saliva is non-infectious.

So as Dr. H says many times, "multiply a risk near zero by 100, and you're still close to zero risk."

J

PS. To give you a sense of how low-risk for HIV it is to get a blowjob under any circumstance, I can tell you about the place where I volunteer as an HIV outreach guy. It's for a Catholic church run by very prudish, conservative Latin American women in their 40s. These ladies take any opportunity to tell people to be scared of sex. Even THEY don't view getting a blowjob as an HIV risk; they only get concerned with people who get blowjobs without condoms, because they believe the people will eventually move on to having other kinds of unprotected sex which does have a real HIV risk. If Do
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Avatar_n_tn
I had unprotected sex 5 days and from that night the liquid that is coming out my vagina smells really bed (smells like old fish ) it never happened to me never In my life think that
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Avatar_n_tn
I  have been with my fiance for four years now, and last week was the first time that we had have unprotected sex, i have never been wiht another guy and he has never been with another girl.  About three days after we had unprotected sex i started developing bumps on the inside of my vagina, they are red and itchy bumps, and since then my vaigina has been dry, and when i pee it feels really hot, the bumps are just really itchy, and annoying. Can it be an std if we both have never been with another partner.  The only other thing is my fiance had bought (im going to call it) spermicide that i used after we had sex, can it be some sort on an allergic response to that spermicde i put in me.  What else can it be. ive had the rash for about 4 days now, the itching is less frequent, in the past two days
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