Bloomberg News

Women With HIV Can Safely Use Hormonal Birth Control, WHO Says

February 17, 2012

Feb. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Women living with HIV or at high risk of becoming infected can safely continue using hormonal contraceptives, the World Health Organization said after reviewing possible links between the products and the virus.

The Geneva-based United Nations health agency confirmed its existing recommendations today after a study published last year found using contraceptive injections doubles the chance women will catch HIV and transmit it to a male partner. A higher risk was also observed for birth-control pills, but that finding wasn’t statistically significant, the researchers wrote in October in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal.

Women and their partners should also use condoms to prevent HIV transmission, the WHO said in an e-mailed statement.

--With assistance from Simeon Bennett in Geneva. Editor:

To contact the reporter on this story: Kristen Hallam in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Phil Serafino at

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