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Need a specialist answer. Already curing my OCD
Jan 18, 2006

First of all: Thank you, thank you, thank you !!!

I see that professors sometimes give us (MD students) just the basics of HIV-HBV-HCV transmission & knowledge... but they don't go such deep - and practical like you do !

I have some questions that concerns me a bit (like future health care worker and actual brother of a young child), and I did not receive an answer everywhere Ive been looking for !

It would be a real pleasure for me to get an answer for you, dr. Dieterich just to help me to relieve some black thoughts I have in the last period, concerning strange ways of catch infections in the health-care setting.

I fear to become ill while working in a place where we should give health ! Pretty weird isnt it?

OK, here are the questions ! I do really hope you can give me an answer !!! (please please please !)

1. People spoke a lot about HCV in dry blood.. and seems not to be real an issue for what it regards infection... BUT what about HBV (they say it can live up to 11 days on dry surfaces !)?

2. Let's say I touch some surface that has some dry blood (or has some viruses I cannot obviously- see on it) ... nothing "sticks to" my hand-fingers... but actually I touch that stain SO what happens??? Viral particles can stick to my hand (can jump on my finger???) and I - a chronic nail biter- put my hands in my mouth...and I am at risk?

Is this a way to get infected (for HBV, HCV, HIV)?

Is mouth to hand contact really a risk factor for hepatitis?

You know sometimes when my professors speak seems like were all in a clear and present danger seems like everything has the potential to harm you,. And I see that this just helps me to grow up in what I think is a OCD ! Im already seeking a specialist help for what it regards obsession nevertheless I think it could be useful to receive and answer form a n experts, just to have the proof that my thoughts are just obsessions and obsessions, well are obsessions !

This refers to children too: always touching, and always putting hands in mouth (I've just seen a child in the hospital crawling on the floor -that are not that clean ! not in a surgery ward !!!) and then putting hands in mouth !!!

Thank you so much, from me and my therapist, M.

Response from Dr. Dieterich

Hepatitis B, C and HIV cannot really be transmitted the way that you describe. Hepatitis A is really spread through fecal-oral contact. This is the virus that you can catch by putting your hands in your mouth, if you are cleaning the toilet without gloves on and the person who just used it had hepatitis A. That is relatively rare, since Hepatitis A never becomes a chronic infection. The bottom line is wash your hands after using the bathroom and after touching patients. Other than that, there is really no reason to worry. Good luck with the OCD! DTD



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