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ALMOST GIVING UP ASKING QUESTION AT THIS FORUM!!!!!!!!!!! (Indonesia)
Sep 30, 2005

Dear Dr. Bob,

Please answer this question. I have been trying to post questions at this forum forever and you guys never answer.

I have seen similar question, but your reply, you said, only apply to those living in the western wold!

Doctor, I have been having my blood drawn at local clinics in Indonesia for tests. And I'm quite picky about how the lab assistant go around doing their test. i.e the other day I was complaining that they put a used syringe 3 feet from me while taking my blood. I confronted the lab assistant and his supervisor about it. THey said that they have a busy day that day, so the used syringe was put aside for disposal later. I did see though that the lab assistant produce a new syringe to draw my blood.

The other day I went to the same lab again to have my blood taken for HIV test ( have done several in the past at this lab), the same lab assistant called me and asked me to sit down. I was affraid that he would take may blood because of the past experience that I had with him (putting used syringe 3 feet from me).

At the end, it was another guy who ended up taking my blood. Now this is where I got worried. Instead of using syringe, like they always do in the past, this guy uses vacutainer tube to draw my blood. I was okay with it until I left the lab. I didn't see him take a new needle. What I saw was a capped needle already attached to the plastic holder (capped). I recall didn't see any blood on the tip of the needle.

I'm worried that because I had some complaints in the past about how they do their business, the lab assistant purposely used a contaminated needle on me!!

If it was a contaminated needle that was used to draw my blood, would 12 weeks window period be enough to detect HIV?Please just answer Doc. Bob

I called the doctor at the lab and she assures me that they used diposable needle for every blood draw.

I also spoke to the lab assistant that draw my blood, he said the reason he uses vacutainer is because i have big vein and the sample would be much more accurate for testing.

But I'm still affraid that the lab assistant purposely used a contaminated ones to harm (of course the lab or the doctor would not have known).

PLEASE ANSWER ME!!!!!

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

The reason I have not responded, even though you have been posting this question "forever," is that your question is rather whacked.

I'll be brief: I see absolutely no risk. Your conspiracy theory that a pissed off lab assistant would purposefully try to contaminate you is nutso. Having a used syringe three feet from you poses no HIV risk. A 12-week window period is indeed enough time to detect HIV antibodies.

Finally, HIV is not your problem. Anxiety and irrational fear are. I suggest you stop testing. Start using latex condoms to avoid the need for testing in the future. Arrange for counseling to address your irrational fears.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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