U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Public Health Service
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A Guide to Locating Information About Condom Efficacy and Use


Recent studies provide compelling evidence that latex condoms are highly effective in protecting against HIV infection when used correctly and consistently for every act of intercourse. This guide was produced by the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse as a tool to assist program developers and health educators in locating information about condom efficacy and use. It includes information about key reports, studies, and journals that highlight the scientific evidence about the ability of condoms to prevent HIV transmission. Both print and electronic resources are provided; availability information is included for each resource. For information about ordering materials that are available from the Clearinghouse, please call 1-800-458-5231 (voice); 1- 800-243-7012 (TDD).

The guide also includes a list of organizations with expertise in this area. These groups conduct research on condoms as risk reduction tools or provide condom education to the target audiences that they serve. Many are willing to provide assistance to others who are planning condom education programs.

Key Subject Terms

When conducting research in libraries or using online resources, the use of certain terms will help you formulate your search. Since much of the literature on condoms has been published in journals and books that focus on contraception, several of the terms below are drawn from the field of family planning.

  • AIDS (Disease)
  • Barrier methods
  • Condom
  • Contraception
  • Contraceptives
  • HIV Infection
  • HIV Prevention
  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus
  • Safer Sex
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases
  • Sexually Transmitted Disease--Prevention

1. Selected Reference Resources

"Update: Barrier Protection Against HIV Infection and Other Sexually Transmitted Diseases," Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, August 6, 1993, Vol. 42, No. 30, 589-597, available from the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse, inventory no. D445.

This report describes laboratory and epidemiologic findings regarding the effectiveness of condoms in the prevention of HIV infection and other STDs. Data from these studies indicate that in heterosexual couples in which one partner is HIV positive and the other is HIV negative, use of a latex condom substantially reduces the risk for HIV transmission. An Editorial Note describing proper condom use and methods for prevention of HIV infection is also included.

Facts About Condoms and Their Use in Preventing HIV Infection and Other STDs, July 1993, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Available from the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse, inventory no. D444.

This fact sheet summarizes recent studies that provide compelling evidence that latex condoms are highly effective in protecting against HIV infection when used properly for every act of intercourse. It also includes a list of steps for correct use of condoms, addresses common myths about condom use, and discusses other HIV prevention strategies.

Hatcher, Robert, A., et al. Contraceptive Technology, 1990- 1992 edition available from Bridging the Gap, 1014 Sycamore Dr., Decatur, GA 30032, (404) 373-0530. 1994-1996 edition will be available in January 1994.

This comprehensive biannual guide to contraception, provides background information on all methods of contraception. The 1990-1992 edition includes information on condoms and their use in preventing the transmission of HIV.

The Facts (series of fact sheets from the Center for Population Options, 1025 Vermont Ave., NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20005, (202) 347-5700. These fact sheets provide concise information on condom use and include bibliographies.

  • Adolescents, HIV and Other Sexually Transmitted Diseases, May 93
  • Condom Efficacy and Use Among Adolescents, January 1993
  • Adolescents and Condoms, October 1991
  • Adolescent Contraceptive Use, June 1990
  • Adolescent Sexuality, Pregnancy and Parenthood, December 1993

Bao, D., Thorne, B., Condom Educator's Guide, Condom Resource Center, Oakland: 1991. P.O. Box 30564, Oakland, CA 94604, (510) 891-0455.

This monograph gives advice to college students educating their peers about safer sexual conduct and HIV infection. It provides detailed information about different types of condoms and how to use them, with emphasis on behavior modification and the importance of attitudes.

Population Reports, "Condoms--Now More Than Ever," Population Information Program Series H, No. 8, September 1990; available from Population Information Program, Center for Communication Programs, Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, 111 Market Place, Suite 310, Baltimore, MD, 21202. (410) 659-6336 or -6337; Fax (410) 659-6266.

This issue of Population Reports provides an excellent overview of condom education worldwide and includes an extensive bibliography. Articles cover a broad range of topics related to condom use in developed and developing countries; efficacy in prevention of STDs and pregnancy; promotional methods with respect to different audiences and challenges, and examples of successful marketing; counseling on condom use; increasing availability; national condom standards; and steps in the development of new types of condoms for men and women. It includes an illustrated cut out flyer on correct condom use and statistics on condom use for family planning and efficacy in prevention of pregnancy.

2. Key Journals and Newsletters

Current information on HIV/AIDS research studies and findings is frequently published in journals, newsletters and newspapers. The following publications regularly address questions relating to condom efficacy and use. They can be found in most university and medical libraries.

Contraceptive Technology Update

This monthly newsletter for health professionals provides information and analysis about contraception, prevention of STDs and pregnancy, counseling, product labeling, education, federal funding, and group behavioral studies. Articles include educational materials reviews, legislation analysis, quarterly STD update, and a question and answer section. Available from American Health Consultants, Inc., 3525 Piedmont Road, Building 6, Suite 400, Atlanta, GA 30305. (800) 688-2421; (404) 262-7436.

FDA Drug Bulletin

The Food and Drug Administration's monthly bulletin reviews new drugs and medical devices (including condoms) approved by the FDA, and evaluates drug treatment and effects. Available from FDA Drug Bulletin, Circulation Dept., HFI-43, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville MD 20857. (301) 443-3220.

Family Planning Perspectives

A bi-monthly journal, Family Planning Perspectives includes articles, book reviews, letters, digests and program spotlights. Research articles about the United States and the developed world are intended to be of practical assistance to professionals in the fields of family planning, population studies and maternal and child health. A quarterly journal, International Family Planning Perspectives, includes articles about developing countries covering contraceptive practice, and research; fertility levels; trends and determinants; public policies and legal issues; STDs; and reproductive maternal and child health. Both journals are available from the Alan Guttmacher Institute, 111 Fifth Ave., New York, NY, 10003. (212) 254- 5656; Fax (212) 254-9891.


Network is a quarterly journal, published in English, Spanish, and French, for health professionals covering contraceptive development, family planning, reproductive health, and AIDS prevention around the world. Available from Family Health International, P.O. Box 13950, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709. (919) 544-7040; Fax (919) 544-7261; Telex 579442.

Population Reports

These topic-focused reports cover family planning and population information in the United States, Europe, and developing countries. All aspects of family planning and contraception, including specific methods, correct use, efficacy in preventing STDs and pregnancy, counseling, and the impact of family planning on fertility, family planning programs, youth and education are covered. Some issues of Population Reports are available in Arabic, French, Portuguese, and Spanish. Series H and L deal with STDs, contraception, and AIDS. Available from Population Information Program, Center for Communication Programs, Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, 111 Market Place, Suite 310, Baltimore, MD 21202 (410) 659-6336 or 6337; Fax (410) 659-6266.


Contraception, sexuality, AIDS and other STDs are covered in this bimonthly report. Issues include stories, publication reviews, fact sheets, listings of educational resources, and a conference calendar. Available from the Sex Information and Education Council of the United States, 130 West 42nd Street, Suite 2500, New York, NY, 10036 (212) 819-9770.

3. Print and Electronic Indexes to Journals

Print, CD-ROM, and online databases are available to help locate articles in the journals and newsletters described above as well as in other periodicals. The print indexes described below can be found in most public libraries; the online databases are available in some public libraries and in most university and medical libraries.

Print Indexes

SIRS (Social Issues Resources Series) is an informational service, released monthly, covering AIDS and other social science questions of high visibility. Each edition includes an index and the full text of 1-5 articles per month. Readers Guide to Periodical Literature is a monthly index to popular literature. Topics of articles can be searched by subject headings.

CD-ROM Indexes

Magazine Index (TM), Magazine Article Summary (TM), and Infotrac (TM) are CD-ROM article summary services of popular literature that are updated monthly. They can be searched by author, title, journal, or keyword; publication information and abstract can be printed directly from the computer screen.

Online Databases

The following databases can be searched to find articles about condoms in journals, conference proceedings, reports, and monographs. Consult your university or public librarian for additional information on these and other electronic resources. A list of commercial vendors that make these databases available is included following the descriptions.

AIDS Daily Summary

Provided by the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse, this service provides summaries of AIDS-related articles from major newspapers and journals. The AIDS Daily Summary is available online to registered users (organizations working in the fields of AIDS prevention, research, support and care) of NAC ONLINE, the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse's electronic network. Searches of the AIDS Daily Summary are available free by calling a reference specialist at the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse. Call 800-458-5231 to inquire about becoming a registered user or to obtain a free search.

CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse Educational Materials Database

The CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse Educational Materials Database is a collection of information about 12,000 hard- to-find print and audiovisual materials that can be used in AIDS education programs, including those that focus on risk reduction strategies. The database is available online to registered users of NAC ONLINE. Searches are available free by calling a reference specialist at 1-800-458-5231.


Produced by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), this database covers AIDS-related literature from 1980 to the present and is available in print as the AIDS Bibliography. The database covers biomedical, epidemiological, social, and behavioral aspects of the disease as well as health policy issues. AIDSLINE also includes abstracts from International Conferences on AIDS. For information about obtaining access to AIDSLINE through NLM's MEDLARS system, call 1-800-638- 8480. AIDSLINE can also be accessed using NLM's Grateful Med, a user-friendly software package available from the National Technical Information Service at (800) 423-9255. AIDSLINE is also available from DIALOG, Data-Star, BRS (see below for phone numbers).

POPLINE (Population Information Online)

Made available through the National Library of Medicine, POPLINE consists of citations, with abstracts, from the following sources: Center for Population Options, Johns Hopkins University; Carolina Population Center, University of North Carolina; Center for Population and Family Health, Columbia University; and the Office of Population Research, Princeton University. POPLINE includes citations from 1970 to date from the worldwide literature on population, family planning and family-related health care, law, and policy issues including contraceptive methods and AIDS in developing countries. It covers journals, monographs, and technical reports. POPLINE is available on MEDLARS (800) 638-8480 and in CD-ROM, from SilverPlatter (see below for phone number).

PsycInfo/Psychological Abstracts

Produced by the American Psychological Association, this database provides access to the international literature in psychology and related behavioral sciences from 1967 to the present. PsycInfo/Psychological Abstracts is available on DIALOG, BRS, and DataStar; PsycLIT, a CD-ROM version is available from SilverPlatter (see below for phone numbers).

Online Database Vendors

DIALOG                               AIDSLINE; 
PsycINFO                             (800) 334-2564
BRS                                  AIDSLINE-closed June 1992; 
Psychological Abstracts;
Sociological Abstracts               (800) 289-4277
Data-Star                            AIDSLINE; 
Psychological Abstracts              (800) 221-7754
Silver Platter (CD-ROM) POPLINE      (800) 874-1130

4. Resource Organizations

**American College Health Association
P.O. Box 28937
Baltimore, MD 21240-8937
(410) 859-1500
The American College Health Association is a professional association which focuses on health promotion to students and other members of the college community. It offers continuing AIDS education programs for health professionals and students, faculty, and college administrators; coordinates safer sex and AIDS prevention programs; publishes newsletters, reports, and educational materials including a list of condom machine manufacturers and installers; and maintains an extensive library.

American Social Health Association
National STD Hotline
P.O. Box 13827
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
(800) 227-8922
The American Social Health Association's National STD Hotline provides basic information about sexually transmitted diseases to the general public, as well as free literature and referrals.

**Center for Population Options
1025 Vermont Ave., NW.
Ste. 210
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 347-5700
The Center for Population Options (CPO) seeks to improve adolescent decision-making through life planning and other sexuality education programs; to promote access to comprehensive health care, including family planning, through school-based and other community-based clinics; and to prevent the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases among adolescents. CPO operates the National School Condom Availability Clearinghouse which maintains information about current school condom availability programs, programs that are in development, and those that have been rejected. Staff provide technical assistance to individuals and school districts in the areas of program design, implementation, and evaluation.

**Condom Resource Center
P.O. Box 30564
Oakland, CA 94604
(510) 891-0455
The Condom Resource Center is dedicated to reducing the incidence of sexually transmitted diseases, including AIDS, and unintended pregnancy by increasing the proportion of sexually active persons who use condoms. It sponsors National Condom Week and provides outreach education, technical assistance, and print and audiovisual materials.

Alan Guttmacher Institute
111 5th Ave.
New York, NY 10003
(212) 254-5656
The Alan Guttmacher Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides research findings and policy analysis in the areas of family planning and reproductive rights.

Mariposa Education and Research Foundation
3123 Schweitzer Dr.
Topanga, CA 90290
(818) 704-4812
The Mariposa Education and Research Foundation is a nonprofit organization involved in research and prevention of sexually transmitted disease, in general, and AIDS in particular.

National Collegiate AIDS Network
HAVOC Director
321 South Jordan Ave.
Bloomington, Indiana  47401
(812) 332-2092
The National Collegiate AIDS Network's goal is to serve as an avenue by which institutions of higher learning across the United States and agencies which serve them can exchange information, ideas, and resources on HIV/AIDS concerns among the college student population. The Network publishes a newsletter three times per year.

**Planned Parenthood Federation of America
810 7th Ave.
New York, NY 10019
(212) 541-7800 (national headquarters)
(800) 230-PLAN (automatic connection to the nearest local affiliate)   
The Planned Parenthood Federation of American (PPFA) is a federation of family planning organizations nationwide that provide reproductive health care and sexuality education. PPFA affiliates provide educational materials, safer sex counseling, referral services, and community education. Most PPFA affiliates offer anonymous and/or confidential HIV testing counseling. PPFA staff can provide technical assistance in launching condom information and promotional campaigns. Some affiliates house resource centers with condom education information.

**Sex Information and Education Council of the US
130 West 42nd St, Suite 2500 
New York, NY, 10036 
(212) 819-9770
The Sex Information and Education Council of the U.S. (SIECUS) was founded to provide information and education on family life and related issues to health care professionals, educators, policy makers, students, and the general public. SIECUS provides technical assistance with the implementation of condom promotion campaigns and events; conducts workshops on issues related to sexuality and HIV/AIDS; maintains a library containing a major collection of AIDS and sexuality- related resources; and provides educational materials and bibliographies.

5. Other Resources

The following are other resources to consider when planning condom education activities:

  • AIDS service organizations and other community organizations in your local area that already provide AIDS prevention education or sexuality education. Call the CDC National AIDS Clearinghouse for information about local AIDS service organizations.
  • Major manufacturers of condoms in the U.S.
  • State and local health departments for technical assistance and materials for use in condom education programs.

[email protected] (Thu Nov 10 05:19:25 1994)