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Rapid negative
May 5, 2010

Hi Dr. Frascino,

I work in a hospital and got splased in the eyes with blood. A rapid HIV test was done on the patient and it was negative. My question is, what if the patient was positive but still hasn't shown up on her blood. Is there still a chance that I can get infected? I am always very careful not to get blood on me, but some how this blood was determined to get in my eyes, it jumped over my saftey glasses and landed in my eye. What are the chances of that happeneing, I just have bad luck,I guess. The work that you are doing is great and I am greatful for your site.

Sincerly, Bad Luck

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Bad Luck,

The blood jumped over your safety glasses and landed in your eye??? Hmm. Blood can flow or spurt or splatter, but it really can't jump.

Your HIV-acquisition risk is extremely minimal. As with all occupational exposures, you should report what happened to occupational medicine so the incident can be properly evaluated and documented. With the source patient testing HIV negative, your HIV risk becomes nearly negligible. The chances the patient was still in his window period during which he is HIV infected but has yet to produce detectable levels of anti-HIV antibodies would be extremely remote. Your occupational medicine division may consider recommending an HIV screening test at three and six months if they feel you had a potential exposure.

Dr. Bob



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