I use condom to prevent the transmission of HIV in anal sex. How can I know if the condom is broken before or during the sex?

  1. What's the feeling when the condom breaks during the sex?

  2. If there are tiny, invisible holes on the condom that will allow HIV to pass through (for example, the condom is damaged by a needle), will it remain complete during the sex or will it break apart "in time" so I can know?

  3. Can I test for those holes before the sex?

  • Just curious: Do you have HIV yourself?
    – Narusan
    May 1, 2017 at 20:24
  • Also, HIV is transmitted via body liquids. So if a condom doesn't let liquids pass through (the sperm in the case of a male using a condom), it will prevent HIV transmission.
    – Narusan
    May 1, 2017 at 20:28
  • @Narusan No I'm hiv negative. What I'm asking is that would it be possible for the condom to have invisible holes where liquids can leak through them? Or is it the case that if the condom has holes, no matter the size, it will break apart completely?
    – Ryan
    May 1, 2017 at 23:20
  • Please ask a new question instead of changing the old question. You can tell that as soon as answer do not answer the question fully, the edit went too far.
    – Narusan
    Jun 17, 2017 at 5:47
  • 1
    You edited the question and changed the emphasis, and it is now fairly off topic. Nobody can definitively say "This is what if feels like" for a break. Also, you are asking multiple questions in one, which is frowned upon on SE sites.
    – JohnP
    Jun 19, 2017 at 19:34

1 Answer 1


I'm afraid the answer is no, you can't know in advance if the condom is going to break.

As far as I can tell, and from my own personal experience, most condom failures are not due to the condom itself being bad, but from misusing it, e.g. putting it in a wrong angle (so it slides off during the act), using too much force during the act, thus tearing the condom, etc.

Sometimes there are indeed failures in the material itself, causing it to tear while using it, but no way to see those, they are not visible.

So my tips are quite common:

  • Make sure the condom is not expired. (they always must have expiration date on the package)
  • Make sure the condom's package is sealed when you open it.
  • Put the condom properly. (Tons of guides if one wants, don't think it's needed to repeat here.)
  • If during the act you have a feeling it's breaking/broken pull out immediately and take a look. In case of actual breaking, the hole should be obvious.


  • 1
    References are expected.
    – Carey Gregory
    May 15, 2017 at 23:16
  • Can I tell after the condom is broken?
    – Ryan
    Jun 17, 2017 at 1:42
  • Also, please see my edited question.
    – Ryan
    Jun 17, 2017 at 1:50
  • @Ryan from personal experience no you can't really tell since you're, well, caught up in the act and not really focused on those things. As for edited question I need to look for sources, my answer currently is not really good since it's all my own assumptions, common sense, and personal experience. If I won't find references, maybe better talk in chat where we can share "unproven" things without lowering the site's quality. Jun 17, 2017 at 7:53

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