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You are watching: Can drugs transferred through bodily fluids


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A reader submitted the complying with question:

Can medicines that guys take consistently (like blood pressure, cholesterol, or diabetes meds) be passed with their seminal fluid to their dental sex partner? plenty of sex workers favor to perform dental sex there is no a condom (bareback) and they frequently make the decision to swallow rather than spit. If medication deserve to be passed prefer this, are these girls at any kind of risk?”

Thanks because that this really interesting question! Let’s first start by looking at whether medications that males are taking even show up in your semen in ~ all. Study has discovered that this does undoubtedly happen and also that “seminal fluid chemical concentrations space typically comparable to or lower than blood concentrations” <1>. So, medications and also other medicine that men consume do show up in their semen to part degree, just as they have tendency to appear in various other bodily fluids. However, store in mind the the lot of ejaculate generally produced is quite little and, ~ above average, consists of aboutone or two teaspoons. Thus, also though medications might be existing in semen, this liquid is released in such tiny quantities that any type of potential chemistry transfer v it would certainly be very, an extremely small.

The following question is exactly how much of these chemicals are actually absorbed by men’s sex partners. Unfortunately, I have the right to only address potential because that vaginal absorption because that is the just sexual task that has actually been learned in this context to date—thus, us cannot straight speak to exactly how much absorption would happen through oral or anal sex, or through same-sex partners. Us do understand that absorption of drugs through the vagina is at least possible(indeed, this is why doctors occasionally prescribe medicines to it is in administered v vaginal suppositories--this absorbency of the vaginal walls isalso why a small variety of women have actually tried gaining drunk v vodka-soaked tampons). However, due to the fact that semen does not remain in constant contact with the quality walls and also there is some level of “leakage” after ~ intercourse,it is unlikely that any medications current in semen would be totally absorbed through vaginal sex.

When you variable in both restricted exposure and also imperfect absorption, scientists conclude the chemical transfer through vaginal intercourse is i can not qualify to it is in “quantitatively important” <1>. Also if girlfriend assume finish absorption, a big amount of semen, and a an extremely highly concentrated drug present in that semen, researchers still believe thatthe resulting carry is unlikely to it is in clinically relevant.

As some added evidence of this, a pair of studies was published last year spring at whether drugs known to have toxic side impacts on a occurring fetus have the right to be transferred with semen. One study focused on humans and also found no difference in likelihood that adverse pregnancy outcomes for men who were taking these drugs approximately the time the their female partner conceived compared to those who were not <2>. The various other was an experimentalanimal research looking at carry of chemistry to the occurring fetus, i beg your pardon concluded that there to be no “biologically coherent exposure risk” the the medication v semen <3>.

Again, ns am not conscious of any research looking specifically at medication-based semen transport through oral sex; however, I would certainly predict that the conclusions are unlikely come be lot different, given that the potential amount of a drug that might be soaked up through a single act is very little no issue what form of sex you’re talk about. That said, because that a sex worker who performs lot of unprotected sex acts in a short period of time, the answer might potentially be different, especially if over there is a the majority of commonality in the medications/drugs provided by the clients. However, in such cases, the risks of medication transfer space unlikely to be together consequential because that sex workers’ health and wellness as their hazard for contractingsexually transmitted infections.

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<1>Klemmt, L., & Scialli, A. R. (2005). The transport of chemistry in semen.Birth Defects Research component B: Developmental and also Reproductive Toxicology,74(2), 119-131.

<2> Weber-Schoendorfer, C., Hoeltzenbein, M., Wacker, E., Meister, R., & Schaefer, C. (2013). No proof for an boosted risk of adverse pregnant outcome after paternal low-dose methotrexate: one observational cohort study.Rheumatology, ket390.

<3> Breslin, W. J., Hilbish, K. G., Page, T. J., & Coutant, D. E. (2014). Assessment of fetal exposure risk following seminal excretion of a therapeutic IgG4 (T-IgG4) monoclonal antibody using a hare model.

See more: Which Experiments Led To Changes To The Original Cell Theory? ?

Reproductive Toxicology,48, 124-131.