Sep 12, 2005
Hi Dr. Bob,
I worked at a waterpark this past summer and one of my co-workers, an international student, had a burn on her elbow which she covered with burn cream. Well, when we were walking past each other, she accidently ran into me, hitting her arm against my elbow.
I noticed that had some of her white cream on my arm.
Being the germ-a-phobe that I am, I immediately scrubbed down the area with soap and washed it thoroughly, and checked to see if I had any cuts or abrasions on my elbow. I didn't see any at the time, but I also don't know if there were small ones that were hard to notice.
So, my question is, after getting a small amount of the white from her burn cream on my arm, do you think I am at a significant risk for possible HIV exposure? Her burn was covered with cream but also had some orange spots, so is it possible that the white cream was only covering up the color of her blood?
This girl is of unknown status, although I think she's healthy.
Thanks for any help in answering this question.
And, Dr. Bob, please take care of yourself. I hope everything is going well.
Worried in Cincinnati
Response from Dr. Frascino
Cincinnati has a water park? Gosh, the closest thing we had to that when I lived there was that silly statute (with water gushing from her hands) in Fountain Square downtown, which never really worked all that well anyway. But I digress . . . . O.K. back to you.
White goop on your arm from bumping into a fellow water-parker carries absolutely no risk for HIV transmission.
You might want to consider getting some counseling for that germ-phobia before someone sneezes in your direction, causing you to inappropriately soil your tighty whities in fear of mortal contamination.
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