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Help needed: possible needle prick
Aug 26, 2012

Hello,

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.

Good luck,

-David



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