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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
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Blood Splatter
Jan 1, 2005


I work in healthcare "EMS" and was curious, if you were to receive a blood splatter to the eyes, nose or mouth, is it pretty obvious? Do you notice a stinging sensation, taste or smell? What's the actual risk for contracting HepC or HIV? Thankyou for your time.

Response from Dr. McGovern

The splashes to the face which cause the most concern are those to mucosal surfaces like the eyes. However, the risk of acquiring HIV, Hepatitis B or HCV through this kind of exposure is extremely low. If you are in a circumstance where you are concerned about possible blood splashes, you could always put on protective glasses for your eyes to be more confident about your personal safety.

As always, if you have an exposure which you are unsure of, don't guess - get counseling about possible testing from your workplace.

Dr. McGovern

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