Anonymous
Two weeks ago, I met a transexual online and we had sex (unprotected oral and protected anal). During insertive protected anal sex (less than a minute) the condom broke and we stopped. We didn't notice any blood and I washed up just to be sure, and had protected anal sex again (nothing broke or bled). She said she was disease-free, but am still worried about the exposure. I called my local sex clinic (very reputable) and they said PEP was not necessary, even though countless online resources are telling me otherwise. They said because I was a top, still using a condom, first time engaging in this activity, and no blood, exposure was very minimal. I am still unconvinced and am very worried now. I am having headaches, sore throat, fatigue, and stomach problems and am worried I may be infected. I know I have to wait at least four weeks, but is there any information that can calm me down or reassure that the clinic I went to was correct in its diagnosis? What are my chances of contracting HIV?
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Anonymous
Hi there,

Thank you for choosing the AIDS Vancouver Helpline as your source of information.

First of all, I would like to suggest that you take what you read online with a grain of salt. A great majority of these sites makes baseless claims that are not backed by scientific evidence.

It is great to hear that you chose to protect yourself and others by wearing a condom during sex. Protected anal/vaginal intercourse is a low risk activity, but when the condom breaks, the risk is elevated.

PEP is indeed not necessary. Usage of PEP is reserved only for high risk situations. You having intercourse with a transsexual person does not automatically put you at high risk. Anyone can pass HIV, regardless of age, occupation, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation. It is the activity (i.e. unprotected anal/vaginal intercourse and needle sharing) that poses an HIV risk.

As far as your symptoms go, there are no clinical symptoms associated with HIV. This means that no consistent physical symptoms have been observed among people with HIV. With that being said, some infected individuals do experience a strong flu-like illness 2-3 weeks post exposure, and this last for about 8-10 days. However, some infected individuals experience no symptoms at all.

Unfortunately, we cannot comment on your chances of contracting HIV. The best way to know your status is to get tested. There is the 4th Generation DUO/COMBO HIV test, which yields very accurate results by 6 weeks post possible exposure. With that being said, the World Health Organization guidelines consider testing to be all conclusive at 84 days (12 weeks).

If you have further questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to a health care professional in your area.

You might find the following two links to be helpful: [Smart Sex Resource ](http://smartsexresource.com/) and our [AIDS Vancouver Helpline](http://helpline.aidsvancouver.org/) website.

In health,

Moe, AIDS Vancouver Helpline Volunteer.
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