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presency of hiv
Jun 14, 2010

Hi Dr. can hiv virus is present only on visible blood? beacous once day my friend(hiv+)cuts a apple. during this his fingur also get cut with knife. after 5 min. i use this knife for cuts the another apple and obtaind slices are eaten. what will be the chances of hiv infection?

Response from Dr. McGowan

The chances would be very low. The risk would depend on a few factors:

1) How much virus (the viral load) is in your friend's blood. If he had suppppressed his HIV with medicine the risk would be esremely low. 2) If there was no visible blood on the knife (and it may have been wiped clean by the apple) that also decreases the amount of exposure. 3) The acidity of the apple would further decrease the risk 4) Spread of HIV through the GI track (in the mucous membranes of the mouth) is much less than a puncture through the skin. HIV that might be in a tiny amount on the apple would be even less likely to get through the mucous membranes in the mouth.

So overall, the risks would be extremely low.

Best, Joe



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