|Help needed: possible needle prick
Aug 26, 2012
Last night I was cleaning toilets at a shopping centre. As I was cleaning one of the toilets, I laid one hand down on top of the toilet paper dispenser and felt something hard. I then turned around to see what it was and there was a syringe under my hand. I am not sure whether or not I was pricked and I don't remember if I felt anything sharp when i laid my hand/finger on the syringe. Inside there was blood but I was wearing gloves at the time. Afterwards my supervisor had looked at it. I am really concerned whether I was pricked or not and whether I may have contracted HIV. I looked on my finger but didn't see any blood or anything but possibly a small hole on the skin (might be paranoid). I also didn't see where my hand/finger was on the syringe when I touched it.
I will greatly appreciate a response and am looking forward to hearing from you as this is very stressful for me at this time.
| Response from Dr. Fawcett
Thank you for writing. You need to immediately bring your situation to the attention of your physician (or someone with some knowledge of HIV protocols). I am astonished your supervisor didn't refer you for care. Medical professionals can assess your situation and, if necessary, begin PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) to be certain you do not seroconvert, if you have indeed been exposed.
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