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Occupational exposure!?

Jun 8, 2012

About 2 hours ago, my friend and I (both medical students) may have been exposed. We were assisting in inserting a CVP line, and without thinking weren't using gloves because we were not getting into any contact with the patient (sterile procedure). We were just moving the sheets and helping to position the patient. Unfortunately, the doctor had his gloves contaminated on more than one occasion and proceeded to touch the sheets and a pillow we were using to extend the neck. We were moving these sheets and this pillow. His gloves didn't have any obvious blood on them at the time as we remember. After the procedure, we noticed she was HIV +ve in her docket, and checked the pillow and so on, to notice there were noticeable red stains that the patient did not notice before. I bite my nails actively, but they don't bleed (cuticle is gone on some fingers). At the time, my hands have open skin - but in essence, not open wounds. My colleague however cut her hand this morning. We were told by the doctor (after reporting it) that there was no risk, HOWEVER at this time I fear it might be best to just take PEP. Any advice on the way to proceed? I'm still well within the 24 hour period at this point in time. If I get a response ASAP it may be enough time to act and I will try my best to make a donation.

Response from Dr. Young

Hello and thanks for posting.

Based on what you've described, I would not consider this to be a significant enough possible exposure to warrant post-exposure prophylaxis.

By the way, you have a 72 (not 24) hour time period to initiate post-exposure prophylaxis.

No donation is required; but if you feel so moved, consider a donation to Rocky Mountain CARES.

Be well, BY

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