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hcv - finger in mouth
May 14, 2006

hi, I was sleeping with my girlfriend wearing a condom. after i took it off i noticed some blood on the condom -but not much at all, but washed my hands and thought nothing of it.

i later noticed that some blood was still on my finger and thought about how i had put that finger in my mouth some time after sex and having washed my hands. most importantly, i had bleeding gums at some point before i had put my finger in my mouth - because i have gingivitis. i also have a cancker sore but that is way down in the bottom of my mouth.

im not sure how much blood if any got into my mouth, but if my gums had been bleeding a bit before or god-forbid during the time i stuck my finger in my mouth, would i be at risk for hep C. how much blood on my finger would pose a significant risk? -j

Response from Dr. McGovern

You have not mentioned if you know your girlfriend to be a known carrier of hepatitis C or not. Assuming she is chronically infected, transmission through swallowing of bloody fluid is extremely low. Your risk may be slightly increased due to your gingivitis, but again, I would put this in an "extremely low risk" category. Sometimes, patients are relieved to get a negative result by testing, so this is an option, just to give you peace of mind.

Dr. M.

Vitamins and HIV/HEP B
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