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Worried Student Need Advice Please
Apr 13, 2010

Doctor,

You deserve a lifetime achevement award for the meaningful you do here and with your Foundation. I am a worried student who would like your advice. I am not sexually active but am worried about a particular incident. Last week, I was walking along a street in South Africa at night when someone "brush" me on my left hand, and in particular, I felt a sharp tinge on the middle finger of the left hand. I turned around to look at who did it but that person had disappeared into an alley. My middle finger is bruised and some blood came out. It remains red, bruised and is aching. It is as if I was pricked by something. Because I am a visitor in a country that has a high rate of HIV cases, I am worried that I was pricked by an object (syringe/needle perhaps) that could lead to STD/HIV transmission. I am not sure what to do now as I have lost all sense of rationality after this incident. I do not think I suffer from any mental disorder but this incident concerns me. Thankful for your advice on this. Could STD/HIV be transmitted this way, and therefore should I go for testing? Or should I just let my finger heal, forget about this incident, and move on in life? I have some money I have saved up over the years which I wish to give to charity, and I would like to give it to your Foundation. It is not much but I hope it would help in some way. Thank you - Martin

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi Martin,

Relax Max! Or perhaps that should be "mellow-out Marvin!" Your HIV-acquisition risk is nonexistent. Remember, HIV does not live very long outside the body, and the chance of a deranged psychopath injecting an adequate amount of fresh HIV-tainted blood into your finger as he passed by is a quantum leap beyond remote. Neither worry nor HIV testing is warranted, OK?

Thank you for your very kind comments. As for a lifetime achievement award, no, not yet. There are still so very many things I want to accomplish during my brief time on this wild, wacky and indescribably wonderful planet. Thank you for your donation to The Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation (www.concertedeffort.org). Both your generous comments and gift are very warmly appreciated.

Be well. Don't worry. Enjoy your time in South Africa. It's an amazing place!

Dr. Bob



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