Warning over lambskin condoms

Warning over lambskin condoms

MASERU-NOT all condoms in the market today can prevent HIV or other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), according to Dr Patrick Kanyema.
Speaking during the Condom Day commemorations at the AIDS Health Foundation (AHF) premises on Tuesday, Dr Kanyema said there are two types of condoms in the market and “we have to read their packages carefully”.

He said lambskin condoms are made with sheep intestines and should not be used as HIV prevention strategies “since it could allow the HIV virus to pass because the materials are not the same as of latex – external and internal condoms”.

In most cases lambskin condoms are preferred by people who claim they are sensitive to latex.
Lambskin condom is made from animal skin and it is said to transmit more body heat as compared to latex condoms and therefore it is preferred by people looking for intense sensual pleasure.

Dr Kanyema recommended two types of latex or rubber condoms available in the market which he said help to protect against HIV or STIs; external (male) and internal (women).
“Users of a condom must look at it as it is well written to ensure that he/she is not about to use a condom made for pleasure purposes,” Dr Kanyema said.

He said if there is no effectiveness, one would not be protected.

“That means we should use condoms efficiently, consistently and correctly,” he said.
“Otherwise, if one uses it at times, he or she would not be able to control his or herself”.
Dr Kanyema said there are still people who really do not believe that condoms are useful in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

AHF does not only support usage of condoms but it has also put in place many HIV prevention methods. These include Voluntary Men Medical Circumcision (VMMC), Risk Reduction Counseling (RRC) and Diagnoses of STIs and Management.

International Condom Day will officially be celebrated on the 13th of February but that “doesn’t mean we are not educated or we are pushing people to (commit) sexual immorality.”
He said in RRC, they advise their clients to abstain but if one feels like they are ready then they encourage them to practice safer sex.

“We found that use of condom is the best for prevention of HIV/STIs,” Dr Kanyema said.
He said condoms are impermeable to HIV “unless if there is leakage or unnoticed break.
That is when it could fail to prevent an exposure to HIV, he said.
He said these types of mechanical failures are relatively rare.

’Mapaballo ’Mile, the AHF Country Program Manager, said condoms were introduced in the 1500-1800.
’Mile indicated that back then, the condom was created mainly for family planning purposes.
She said condoms are mostly offered for free in the country.
’Mile however said Lesotho imports condoms from Thailand.
“It is very expensive for us to buy and transport them and it is saddening to see people throwing them around,” she said.

Currently, Lesotho has more than 330 000 people living with HIV.

’Mapule Motsopa

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