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Fresh & immediate blood to blood contact - panicked!
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worried89 posted:
On Sunday just passed, I aided a male who had a head wound (needless to say he was taken to hospital) however while helping him we ended up on the ground which caused me to cut the knuckles on my right index finger and left thumb. These cuts were relatively small, no more than 5mm, but were freshly opened and bleeding.

The male was fairly heavily bleeding from his wound, which required stitches, and had blood all over himself.

I can't say precisely whether my cuts came in to contact with any of his blood but there is a strong possibility they could have. My trousers and shoes had spots of blood at multiple points.

I unfortunately didn't notice my hands were actually bleeding until I got the male to the hospital.

When I did notice, I had blood on both cuts (possibly mine, just from them bleeding) and I immediately washed my hands thoroughly with soap and water.

I do not know the males infection status although he indicated he had used injecting drugs in the passed and had served a long time in prison. I do appreciate this doesn't mean too much but am not sure what risk it poses.

I attended accident and emergency and they provided me with a Hep B injection but not PEP. I am not sure why they didn't do this so any explanation would be very much appreciated.

Hopefully this is enough information. Do you think there is a risk of infection from this encounter and if there is can you explain how/why?

Cheers in advance.
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georgiagail responded:
1. We have no idea what PEP wasn't discussed. Perhaps the issue wasn't brought up because they did not feel you came in contact with this persons blood or felt there was no record of HIV on this person. More likely the focus was only on getting this persons wounds addressed.


2. The only possible risk would be, of course, if your open bleeding wounds (and from your description these were quite small) came in contact with his blood AND he was HIV positive. However, keep in mind that even then there is no guarantee that transmission of the virus would have taken place. The statistics we use in terms of risk from Needle-sharing injection drug-use (a source more likely to directly inject the virus into someone than what you describe) with a source KNOWN to carry the virus only has an ESTIMATED risk of 67 per 10,000 exposures.


If you remain concerned, then consider getting the standard screening test at the 90 day mark.


Gail


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