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stressful mom-surgeon: blood dust !
Jan 8, 2006

Please do answer: I'm stressed ! Hello and have an happy new year... I'm sure my year will start in a good way if you do answer !

I'm an MD and I'm specializing in surgery !

I alway had "fun" in the operating room.

But... well I never used to wear "special" socks just for the hospital. I used to go in the hospital, and put on my boots (ever the OR boots) on my normal socks.

In the last days I've found that when I'm operating, if seated, a small part of my socks are visible under the surgical vest, and so things from the operating field (like small amount of coagulated blood and so on) can fall on the floor and on the boots (as they do fall)and can fall on my socks too !!! This shocked me !

Ok, now i have specific hospital socks...

BUT... what can happen If I use the same socks for work and home? I mean: maybe some little blood can fall on my socks... then I come back home, i pull off my shoes, and I step in my home with my socks on... and "blood dust" come all around !!!

So... am I and my family (expecially my children) at risk for HIV-HBV-HCV?

Please, answer.

an Almost-surgeon Mum, Alessandra form Italy.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Almost-Surgeon Mum, Alessandra from Italy,

"Blood dust" on your socks a risk for HIV and hepatitis??? Hmmm . . . you may be "almost a surgeon," but I have to wonder if you were paying attention in class way back in medical school! I think you may need a refresher course on some basic HIV and hepatitis transmission information. HIV and/or hepatitis cannot permeate intact skin. The chance of your operating room socks carrying home HIV/HBV/HCV blood dust and posing a risk to you and/or your kids is nonexistent.

So don't be "shocked" by your socks. Rather, be informed about realistic transmission risks associated with bloodborne pathogens!

Ciao,

Dr. Bob



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