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Which STIs can be transmitted in other ways besides sex?

HIV, Hepatitis B & C, and Syphilis can be transmitted through IV drug use. If someone has used needle drugs, it’s possible they have an STI, even if they haven’t been sexually active.

What is the most common way HIV is spread?

The two most common modes of transmission for HIV are needle/syringe use and sexual activity (specifically involving sexual fluids, blood, or breastmilk). These fluids must come in contact with a mucous membrane or damaged tissue or be directly injected into the bloodstream (from a needle or syringe) for transmission to occur. Mucous membranes are found inside the rectum, vagina, penis, and mouth.

Mother-to-child transmission is a less common mode of transmission, especially in parts of the world where pregnant people have regular access to medical care and are screened for STIs. 

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