Hiv In The United States
About 1.2 million people in the United States have HIV. In 2018, nearly 38,000 people received an HIV diagnosis in the United States and dependent areas. Though the number of new HIV diagnoses has declined over the last few years, the number of people who have HIV has been increasing because people with HIV are now living longer.
In 2018, 81% of new diagnoses in the United States and dependent areas were among adult and adolescent men and 19% were among adult and adolescent women. Most new HIV diagnoses among women were from heterosexual contact , and another 15% were from injection drug use. By age, 21% of new HIV diagnoses in 2018 were among young people aged 13 to 24, 36% were among people aged 25 to 34, 19% were among people aged 35 to 44, 14% were among people aged 45 to 54, and 10% were among people aged 55 and older.
When you live in a community where many people have HIV infection, the chances of having sex with someone who has HIV are higher. This interactive atlas allows you to see the rates of HIV infection in different US communities. Within any community, the prevalence of HIV can vary among different populations.
Overall, data show
Male Vs Female Partners
When having vaginal sex without a condom with a partner who has a penis, the vaginal membranes are more likely to tear than the partners penis.
In condomless anal sex with a partner who has a penis, the rectal membranes are also more likely to tear than the partners penis. Microscopic tears create an easier path for HIV and other STIs to enter the body when exposed.
Its possible for a partner with a penis to contract HIV during vaginal and anal sex. If a female partner is living with HIV with a detectable viral load, it can be carried in her vaginal secretions. If her partner has open sores on their mouth or penis, they can create a gateway for vaginal secretions or other bodily fluids with HIV to enter the body.
Uncircumcised men are at higher risk of contracting HIV from condomless sex than circumcised men. The delicate membranes of foreskin can tear during sex, creating a pathway for HIV to enter the body.
Why Is Hiv More Common In Men Who Have Sex With Men
Around the world, MSM are 25 times more likely than average to contract HIV, reports UNAIDS.
In the United States, gay men, bisexual men, and other MSM account for the majority of new HIV diagnoses.
Because HIV is more common among MSM, these men are more likely to have sex with someone who has the virus.
Several other factors also raise the chances of transmission across MSM.
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Side Effects Of Hiv Treatment
People on current HIV treatments may experience mild side effects including:
- tiredness and fatigue
- skin rashes.
If you are on treatment, see your doctor every 3 to 6 months.
Regular blood tests are necessary to make sure your treatment is working and not causing serious side effects. It is recommended that you also get tested for STIs and talk to your doctor about your sexual health and overall wellbeing. Ensure you are having routine screening for cancers and keeping your vaccinations up to date.
How Is Hiv Transmitted Through Needles
HIV isnt transmitted only through sexual contact. Sharing needles also puts a person at higher risk of contracting HIV.
When a needle is injected into a persons body, it breaks the skin barrier. If the needle has already been injected into another person, it can carry traces of their blood, along with any infections they have. The contaminated needle can introduce these infections into the second persons body.
Researchers dont know if having an undetectable viral load reduces the risk of HIV transmission through shared needles, but its reasonable to assume it may provide some risk reduction.
HIV can affect anyone. Whatever their age, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, or race, everyone should take steps to protect themselves. But due to socioeconomic factors, some demographic groups have higher HIV transmission rates and generally are more affected by HIV.
According to the CDC , the general demographic traits most affected by HIV are:
Transgender women are also highly impacted by HIV transmissions as a population, reports the CDC .
These groups are disproportionately affected by HIV, but they arent inherently at greater risk of contracting HIV. An individuals personal risk depends on their behaviors, not on their age, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, race, or any other demographic factor.
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Does Hiv Affect Women
Yes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , in 2018, 19% of the new HIV diagnoses in the United States and dependent areas were among women. In addition, 57% of women with HIV were Black/African American.
The most common way that women get HIV is through sex with a male partner who has HIV without using a condom. Most women who have HIV know that they are HIV positive, but some women are not getting the HIV care and treatment they need.
Choosing Types Of Sex With A Lower Risk For Hiv
Some types of sex have a lower risk for HIV than others. Oral sex has little to no chance of passing HIV. Fingering, handjobs, mutual masturbation and using unshared sex toys have no chance of passing HIV. However, STIs can be passed through some of these types of sex. In some situations, you might choose to avoid having vaginal or anal sex and instead choose a type of sex with a lower chance of passing HIV.
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How Can I Get Prep
If you want to take PrEP, you have to talk to a healthcare provider who is licensed to write a prescription.
PrEP medications can be expensive, but cheaper generic versions exist. PrEP is covered by some private and public health insurance plans in Canada.
You may want to contact your doctor, a sexual health clinic or an HIV organization for help to figure out how you can pay for PrEP.
More information about PrEP in different regions of the country, especially for gay guys and other guys who have sex with guys:
- Get PrEPed by the Health Initiative for Men in British Columbia
- The Sex You Want by the Gay Mens Sexual Health Alliance in Ontario
- HIV now by the AIDS Committee of Toronto in Ontario
How Is It Spread
HIV is spread when a person has contact with blood or other bodily fluids infected with HIV.2 Sexual contact is the most common route of HIV transmission. Needle drug use results in thousands of additional HIV infections every year. When a person injects drugs with a needle used by someone who has HIV, there is a serious risk of being infected. In addition, even if needles are not shared, blood can be present in the water or cotton used to filter and inject drugs.3
Some drugs have been associated with risky sexual behavior and/or a heightened risk for contracting AIDS/HIV, including:3
- Alcohol, which can decrease inhibitions and lead to risky and/or unprotected sex
- Opioids, which are frequently injected and can cause an increased risk of HIV transmission. The compulsive nature of opioid addiction may also compel users to trade sex and/or money for drugs
- Meth, or methamphetamine, which is associated with high-risk sexual behaviors, including having multiple partners and not using a condom. In addition, meth is often injected
- Crack cocaine, which can cause users to spend all of their money on the drug and turn to trading sex for drugs, increasing their risk of exposure to HIV
- Inhalants such as poppers, which is another drug associated with risky sexual behaviors, illegal drug use, and sexual transmitted diseases, particularly among gay and bisexual men
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Contaminated Blood Transfusions And Organ/tissue Transplants
- receiving blood transfusions, blood products, or organ/tissue transplants that are contaminated with HIV. This risk is extremely small because most countries test blood products for HIV first.
If adequate safety practices are not in place, healthcare workers can also be at risk of HIV from cuts made by a needle or sharp object with infected blood on it. However, the risk of occupational exposure, is very low in most countries.
If you think you have been exposed to HIV, the only way to find out if you have HIV is to have an HIV test.
Men Who Have Sex With Men
Gay or bisexual MSM are the most severely affected population. MSM account for just a small fraction of the total U.S. population, yet nearly two-thirds of all new infections occurred within this group in 2009, and one-half of all people living with HIV in 2008 were MSM. MSM within ethnic minority populations are at greatest risk .
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How To Be Safe When Coming Into Contact With Infected Blood
A condom will act as a barrier against any contact with blood during sex.
As well as sex, sharing equipment for injecting drugs is a way blood can get into someones body. This can be avoided by using fresh needles and not sharing needles, syringes and other equipment.
If a woman has HIV, her menstrual blood also carries a risk of transmission if she has a detectable viral load.
If youre HIV negative and taking pre-exposure prophylaxis youll be protected against getting HIV if you come into contact with infectious blood.
New Equipment For Using Drugs
If you use new equipment each time you use drugs, there is no risk of getting HIV or hepatitis C through drug use. When injecting drugs, its best to use new needles, syringes, filters, cookers, acidifiers, alcohol swabs, tourniquets and water each time. When smoking or snorting drugs, the pipe or straws should also be new each time. In many communities, there are places where you can get free needles and other equipment for using drugs. These are often called needle and syringe programs. Some communities also have supervised consumption services, where you can bring your drugs to inject under the supervision of a healthcare worker or peer. Supervised consumption services give you all of the equipment you need to inject drugs and the healthcare worker or peer will help if you have an overdose. Visit an HIV or harm reduction organization to learn what services are available in your community.
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Hiv Diagnoses In Canada
How many people are newly diagnosed with HIV in Canada each year?
There were 2,122 HIV diagnoses in Canada in 2019. This represents a 4% increase over the past 5 years .
Among new HIV diagnoses in 2019 where sex was known , 30.2% were in females and 69.8% were in males.
Among the HIV diagnoses in adults where the likely exposure is known , 39.7% were in gbMSM, 28.3% were from heterosexual sex and 21.5% were in PWID in 2019.
Among females, 38.4% of HIV diagnoses were in women who injected drugs and 48.0% were from heterosexual sex in 2019.
Among males, 56.2% were in gbMSM, 4.8% were among gbMSM who also injected drugs, 14.6% were in men who injected drugs and 20.0% were from heterosexual sex in 2019.
Just over a quarter of all HIV diagnoses in males were in male youth in 2019. Just under a quarter of all HIV diagnoses in females were in female youth in 2019
Where are HIV diagnoses rates the highest?
There are four provinces with HIV diagnoses rates above the national average of 5.6 per 100,000 people in 2019:
- the territories
Ways Hiv Can Be Transmitted
How is HIV passed from one person to another?
Most people who get HIV get it through anal or vaginal sex, or sharing needles, syringes, or other drug injection equipment . But there are powerful tools that can help prevent HIV transmission.
Can I get HIV from anal sex?
You can get HIV if you have anal sex with someone who has HIV without using protection .
- Anal sex is the riskiest type of sex for getting or transmitting HIV.
- Being the receptive partner is riskier for getting HIV than being the insertive partner .
- The bottoms risk of getting HIV is very high because the rectums lining is thin and may allow HIV to enter the body during anal sex.
- The top is also at risk because HIV can enter the body through the opening at the tip of the penis , the foreskin if the penis isnt circumcised, or small cuts, scratches, or open sores anywhere on the penis.
Can I get HIV from vaginal sex?
You can get HIV if you have vaginal sex with someone who has HIV without using protection .
Can HIV be transmitted from a mother to her baby?
HIV can be transmitted from a mother to her baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding. However, it is less common because of advances in HIV prevention and treatment.
Can I get HIV from sharing needles, syringes, or other drug injection equipment?
You are at high risk for getting HIV if you with someone who has HIV. Never share needles or other equipment to inject drugs, hormones, steroids, or silicone.
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What Prevention Method Are You Most Likely To Use
As you consider your options, think about which method you will be most likely to use. You can use different methods based on your needs in different situations. You should also consider whether or not you can use a prevention method the right way every time, because a prevention method will only work when you use it correctly.
The method you decide to use may also depend on the prevention methods your partners are using. If you are going to rely on a method your partner is using then you need to know that they are using it the right way every time.
How Common Is Hiv
At the end of 2017, there were an estimated 5099 people in Scotland living with HIV. The majority got the virus through sex.
Around 1 in every 1087 people in the Scotland has HIV, but the three groups with highest rates of HIV are:
- gay and bisexual men or other men who have sex with men
- people from countries with high HIV prevalence, especially sub Saharan African countries
- people who share injecting equipment or who have sex with people who inject drugs
The World Health Organisation estimates that around 36.9 million people in the world are living with HIV.
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Multiple Vulnerabilities Increase Risk In Men And Women
Vaginal sex is one of the primary ways a person can become infected with HIV. According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, it accounts for about 6,300 new infections among women each year in the U.S. and about 2,800 new infections among heterosexual men.
Globally, the figures are even more dismaying. While the sexual transmission of HIV in the U.S. is highest among gay and bisexual men , heterosexuals are by far the group most affected worldwide.
This is especially true in Africa where most new infections are among heterosexuals. In these populations, vaginal sex is the predominant route of infection.
Challenges In Calculating A Number
It isn’t easy for researchers to calculate the risk of transmission from an exposure to HIV through sex. To do this effectively, a group of HIV-negative individuals need to be followed over time and their exposures to HIVboth the number of times they are exposed and the types of exposureneed to be tracked.
As you can imagine, accurately tracking the number of times a person is exposed to HIV is very difficult. Researchers ask HIV-negative individuals enrolled in these studies to report how many times they have had sex in a given period of time, what type of sex they had, how often they used condoms and the HIV status of their partner. Because a person may have trouble remembering their sexual behaviour or may not want to tell the whole truth, this reporting is often inaccurate.
Furthermore, a person does not always know the HIV status of their partner. For this reason, researchers usually enroll HIV-negative individuals who are in stable relationships with an HIV-positive partner . Researchers can then conclude that any unprotected sex reported by a study participant counts as an exposure to HIV.
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Can You Get Hiv Through Oral Sex
The risk of HIV from oral sex is very small unless you or your partner have large open sores on the genital area or bleeding gums/sores in your mouth.
There is only a slightly increased risk if a woman being given oral sex is HIV-positive and is menstruating. However, you can always use a dental dam to eliminate these risks.
What About Prep For Trans Men
There is not a lot of information about the effect of PrEP in trans men, but based on what we know from other people, experts think that trans men can use daily PrEP to help prevent HIV.
An on-demand PrEP schedule should not be used by trans men having frontal sex. For these men, it is very important to take PrEP every day and not miss any pills because daily dosing is needed to keep drug levels high in the front hole or vagina.
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