Effectiveness depends on the user: Risk of pregnancy or sexually transmitted infection (STI) is greatest when condoms are not used with every act of sex. Very few pregnancies or infections occur due to incorrect use, slips, or breaks.

Vertical arrow pointing up showing the effectiveness of male condoms. The bottom of the arrow is less effective and top of the arrow is more effective.  A black bar is in the middle of the arrow.Protection against pregnancy:

  • As commonly used, about 13 pregnancies per 100 women whose partners use male condoms over the first year. This means that 87 of every 100 women whose partners use male condoms will not become pregnant.
  • When used correctly with every act of sex, about 2 pregnancies per 100 women whose partners use male condoms over the first year.

Return of fertility after use of condoms is stopped: No delay

Protection against HIV and other STIs:

  • Male condoms significantly reduce the risk of becoming infected with HIV when used correctly with every act of vaginal or anal sex
  • When used consistently and correctly, condom use prevents 80% to 95% of HIV transmission that would have occurred without condoms (see Question 2).
  • Condoms reduce the risk of becoming infected with many STIs when used consistently and correctly during vaginal or anal sex.
    • Protect best against STIs spread by discharge, such as HIV, gonorrhea, and chlamydia.
    • Also protect against STIs spread by skin-to-skin contact, such as herpes and human papillomavirus.