Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Expert Profile

Mark P. Behar

On Vacation
returns 10/24/2016

Almost any question or concern about gay men's health issues, sexually transmitted infections, abnormal Pap smears, anal cytology (anal "Pap smears"), etc. There is no such thing as “d/d free” or “clean” (free of infection), so why do so many of us deceive ourselves into thinking that some people are indeed totally free from a potentially infectious disease, like HIV, herpes, hepatitis, syphilis, chlamydia, warts, gonorrhea, etc., just because they say so? Clinical laboratory tests are not perfect, and having a “negative” or “nonreactive” test does not mean that a person is free from infection. Perhaps at the moment the test was taken, the person was uninfected; or, perhaps, the test wasn’t sensitive enough to detect presence of the infection. There is really no way that anyone can determine that they are truly “disease free,” and there are over a hundred of infectious conditions that can be spread without your knowing anything. Rather than trying to “pre-screen” or “serosort” a potential sex-mate with deceptive questions that are impossible to know by today’s technologies, a wiser option may be to consider everyone infected with something, and either use appropriate protective measures (“safer sex”), or accept the responsibility and consequences of possibly “catching” something from someone who’s hotter than expected (pun intended!). There is much research that supports the contention that an HIV positive person reliably taking HIV medications, and having an undetectable viral load, presents a lower risk for transmission of HIV than people who may think or say they are HIV negative, but are not. Food for thought!

Experience in the area

Family Practice PA since 1981; Volunteer Clinician for Brady East STD (BESTD) Clinic, Milwaukee, since 1977; answered STD questions submitted to their web site. Professionally lectured at national and regional Physician Assistant and Nurse Practitioner conferences, and at national gay & lesbian health conferences on topics including HIV/AIDS, herpes, hepatitis, STDs, human papilloma virus (the cause of venereal warts), abnormal Pap smears, gay and lesbian health issues, among others.


Co-Founder, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Gay Physician Assistant Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, Inc.; American Academy of Physician Assistants; Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants; National Co-Chair (2012-16), National Association of Black and White Men Together: A Gay, Multiracial Organization for All People (NABWMT)


Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (JAPA) Q Visions, Quarterly Newsletter of the NABWMT


Bachelor's of Arts, 1972 (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI) Graduate Credits Experimental Psychology, 1972-75 (Tulane University, New Orleans, LA) Physician Assistant, Bachelor's of Science, 1981 (George Washington University, Washington, DC); Masters in Physician Assistant Studies, 2000 (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE)

Awards and Honors

Colposcopy Recognition Award (CRA), the American Association of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology; Distinguished Fellow, Clinical Preceptor, American Academy of Physician Assistants; Fellow, Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants

Past/Present Clients

Brady East STD Clinic, Milwaukee, WI Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. (Martin Luther King Heritage Health Center), Dept. of Family Medicine and Early Intervention Program for HIV Infected Persons

What do you like about this subject?

Sex may communication and intimacy with your partner!

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

Great overall web site to browse: Great images available on

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

Anal warts? It doesn't matter how you may have got 'em, but if you have 'em, or EVER HAD THEM, ask your health care provider to give you an anal cytology test ("PAP" smear) to screen for human papilloma virus (HPV) and anal precancers and cancers. "Disease and drug free (DDF)"? It is dishonest and misleading, so please don't promote yourself this way!

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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Clarence 10/19/16101010 
Ana10/14/16101010Thank you for such a quick response! .....

Recent Answers from Mark P. Behar

2016-10-20 STD ? Very concerned!:

Hello Merk,   If these bumps are new, than they need to be more closely examined by a knowledgeable health care provider to rule out flat warts.  However not all bumps are warts, and these may be related

2016-10-19 Sexual Disease could it be HPV?:

Hello Mark,   Warts are growths of tissue caused by human papilloma virus.  So all warts are caused by HPV, by definition.  However not all growths are warts.  Without talking to the doctor who made the

2016-10-18 bumps in my urethra. hpv?:

Hello M. Lewis,  The bumps you have inside your urethra are warts caused by HPV, and require treatment with one of several different methods, which you should discuss with your health care provider. She

2016-10-16 Red Patch On Penis Head:

Hello Steve,  In order to know what you have for sure requires a careful examination, which a health care provider must do.  The redness almost looks like an acute hematoma. Does the redness remain intense

2016-10-15 Is this warts ? An sti:

Hello Madi,  Your symptoms sound very much like a urinary tract infection (cystitis).  Burning with urination, cloudy and odorous urine, low back or low abdominal pain, all may be symptoms of a bladder


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