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acidental prick of needle from HIV + patient
Aug 13, 2004

I am a medical general practitioiner. After giving an injection to HIV+ patient the needle accidently pricked my finger. Being afraid I squeezed the pricked area and then only did the prick bleed. I have started, within 12 hours the dosage of Levovudine and Zidovudine twice a day. Is this the correct therapy for such an acidental prick and for how long should I continue and whenm shall I get tested.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

You can download the U.S. Public Health Service's recommendations from their website. Briefly, if you sustained a significant occupational exposure from a patient confirmed to be HIV positive, you should have HIV-antibody testing for at least six months post-exposure (e.g. at baseline, six weeks, three months, and six months). HIV PEP recommendations consist of a basic four-week regimen of two drugs (zidovudine and lamivudine). Other combinations, such as lamivudine plus stavudine, can also be considered. Two drugs are recommended for most HIV exposures; however, an expanded regimen that includes the addition of a third drug is recommended for HIV exposures that pose an increased risk of transmission. Consideration must also be given to the source person's virus. If it is known or suspected to be resistant to one or more drugs in the basic PEP regimen, alternate drugs should be considered.

Hope that helps. I also think it would be prudent for you to be followed by a colleague who is knowledgeable in HIV PEP, rather than trying to treat yourself.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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