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I feel that I could lose my job and friends
May 22, 2005

Dear Dr Mc Govern, First of all, I believe that your site is very very helpful to all of us lay people out there. I recently came to Africa, to work in a humanitarian project. my work first involved interviewing refugees (only handshakes involved in that, and sitting around them) and the second part has been mostly office work with national colleagues and some interviews with beneficiaries (mainly sexworkers who have been victims of sexual violence). Before coming to Africa, i had a blood test and just found out that I am not immune to heb B because I did not complete the first series of vaccinations in 2002! First q: I do not remember any blood exposures and I did not have any sexual encounter during this time.. The only things that is worriing me is that I have nose bleed from the dry climate and sometimes touch it with my finger. Do you think that there is any problem with that assuming that I had dried blood from somebody else on my hand? Q2/ Today I drank water and found out that the glass was a bit broken on the side. Do you think that if the person who washed it before or drank it had cut himselt and I drank afterwards would you consider a risk. There was no visible blood I only saw a small partical that resembled to dried blood; I keep worrying about all of it . I started my vaccines again but I am afraid

Response from Dr. McGovern

I would say according to what you describe that your risk is nil.

Certainly finish your immunizations. You may also want to get a hepatitis B surface antibody about a month after you finish your series to be certain that you successfully produced antibodies.

I am glad you like the website and thank you for your humanitarian efforts in Africa. You are doing important work.

Dr. McGovern



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