Hepatitis C - hep C - is a growing problem among gay men having chemsex.

It's spread through cum and blood, so there are a number of ways you could expose yourself to hep C during a chemsex session.

How hep C is spread

Hep C is spread through blood. It can be passed on through:

Fucking and being fucked without using condoms - particularly if you're having long heavy sex sessions, as bleeding is more likely.

- If you're injecting drugs, sharing needles can pass on hep C.

Fisting - probably the most common way for Hep C to be passed on. Use fresh latex gloves every time you're fisting or being fisted and don't share pots of lube.

Sex toys - using a toy on different men without using condoms or switching to a fresh condom or washing it between using on different men. 

Snorting equipment - Sharing snorting straws with someone who has hep C, as small amounts of blood could be left behind.

How to prevent hep C

Condoms – Use a condom when you’re fucking or being fucked. If you’re switching between fucking different men, change the condom each time.

Sterile syringes – If you’re slamming use a new sterile syringe and needle. Pick up a slam pack which have colour-coded needles so you can tell who is using what.

Gloves – If you’re being fisted or are doing the fisting, make sure unused latex gloves are worn. If you’re switching between guys, make sure you use a fresh glove each time. If you’re not using gloves, make sure hands are washed thoroughly every time.

Clean your sex toys – Thoroughly clean your dildos before using them and if you’re using a dildo on different guys, you should wash it before you switch. Use a condom on a dildo if you have one and make sure you use a fresh one before switching to other guys.

Have your own straw – Don’t share snorting equipment. Keep your own. 

Read more about keeping your sex toys clean...

1 in 13 gay and bisexual men living with HIV also have hep C.

If you're HIV-positive and you're fucking bareback with other positive men, you're more likely to pick up hep C.
Make sure you're taking the necessary precautions when possible and get tested regularly for hep C.

Read more about hep C...