The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Ask the Experts About

Safe Sex and HIV PreventionSafe Sex and HIV Prevention
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

human bite (HUMAN BITE 2010)

Oct 3, 2010

About 1 month I got bitten by my assitant and he is hiv positive, my finger only bled due to me pulling my hand and my skin tore on my finger he had no bleeding gums or sores in his mouth, I'm terrified, what is my risk.

Response from Dr. Frascino


See below.

Dr. Bob

I'm HIV+ and an infant bit my face, risky for the infant? (HUMAN BITE, 2010) May 26, 2010

Hello Dr. Bob,

Although I am well educated on HIV risk and transmission, a recent incident has me very concerned. A little history, I was diagnosed HIV+ over two years ago (11/2007), and started medication in January of this year (Atripla). Although I do not know my most recent VL, my CD4 count is in the mid 600s and has been consistently stable, from a low of 350 in 11/2009. More so, I have been asymptomatic due to my early detection (thanks to regular HIV testing).

Now to the recent issue that has me concerned, about a month ago my 8-month old nephew bit my face while playing. He is currently teething, and has razor sharp teeth. After the incident, I checked my face and there was a small (pin drop) amount of blood on my face. I then checked his mouth for any open sores/wounds related to the teething, and found none. I also confirmed with his mother that he had no recent bleeding related to the teething. Although a part of me says, "don't worry, it was a tiny are in treatment with stable counts, and there was an insignificant amount of blood," the other part of me is very concerned about the incident, and possible exposure to my nephew.

Could you please speak to the risk associated with such an incident? Most of the literature I have reviewed has identified that there is a minimal/non-existent HIV risk associated with bites, unless there is extensive tissue damage/trauma - which is not the case in this incident. However, most of the literature I have found speaks to someone HIV+ biting someone of HIV- or unknown status, not my specific case.

Any need to be concerned?

Thank you for your time,

Concerned HIV+ uncle

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Concerned HIV+ Uncle,

I agree with the information you found in the literature. The risk of acquiring HIV from the little nip your litter nipper gave you is nonexistent. Neither worry nor HIV testing is warranted.

Dr. Bob

Bit by a homeless guy (HUMAN BITE, 2010) May 7, 2010

I got bit by a homeless guy, really deep, enough to leave a scar and get sticthes, and yes there was alot of bleeding. At six weeks after the incident i had a sudden onset of swollen lymph nodes, and a sore throat which lasted about a week and a half and was checked for strep throat but it came back negative and doctor said it was probably a viral infection. I got tested for hepatitis b, hepatitis c, and hiv 1/2 antibody at week 13 all negative. Should i be satisfied with my results or is retesting at 6 months warranted. Furthermore if my symptoms at 6 weeks were due to infection with hiv or hepatitis should i have tested positive by the time the symptoms had subsided because it means my body had produced enough antibodies to bring the infection under control? and if in fact this is true would i have shown up positive on an antibody test after symptoms had subsided. Thanks for your help.

Response from Dr. Frascino


So, Homeless-guy actually bit you? Damn! I realize these dudes can sometimes get really, really hungry, but I didn't know they were resorting to cannibalism! I think I'll start carrying a few protein bars in my pocket when I'm out-and-about, just in case.

Your HIV-acquisition risk is extremely slight. (See below.) I would consider your negative tests at 13 weeks definitive.

Dr. Bob

Human bite Jan 3, 2007

Recently i was bitten by an hiv+ infected male. i am very anxious and i've been told the risk is low, but how low? it was during a fight and i didnt punch him before he bit me so im hoping there was no blood in is mouth.

Response from Dr. Frascino


Being bitten by an HIV-positive person exposes non-intact skin to saliva. Saliva that is contaminated with infected blood would pose an exposure risk. Saliva that is not contaminated with blood contains HIV in such low concentrations that it does not constitute an HIV transmission risk. If you are worried, get a single HIV test at the three-month mark. However, do realize the odds are beyond astronomical that you did not get infected by chompin' Charlie, OK?

Good luck!

Dr. Bob

STD's, biting and rubbing Aug 3, 2007

Dear Dc. Frascino.

First I must say that what you do in this forum is a very noble thing, you help a lot of people. I have a doubt: what is the possibility of getting aids or other STD's from a human bite? The problem is that a friend convinced me, about two months ago, to go to a stip club for the first time. The girl that perfomred a lap dance on me continuosly bit, sucked and kissed my neck leaving a big purple bruise on me (love bite). I'm unsure if there was any blood, as far as I remember there was none. I washed it a little with water and some time later (about 30 minutes or so) when I got home I put alcohol on it (it didn't hurt so I guess there were no cuts). There was no blood clots or scarification, the bruise simply dissapeared about two weeks later. The girl also rubbed herself against my pants (blue jeans) leaving them a little humid. Conridering movement later on or going to the bathroom, was I at any risk? I fear that maybe I exposed myself to Herpes or HIV. I'm trying to separate the fear from the remoarse (Im not used to these things and my parents would feel dissappointed if they knew about it). Can you please give me some advice?


Signed, 19 year old guy.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi 19-Year-Old Guy,

Relax, Max! This is a big difference between a "love bite" (hickey) and a more viscous human bite. There is a minimal risk of HIV transmission from a human bit that breaks the skin; however, there is no risk from a hickey.

For future reference, when you go to the strip clubs, stay away from the lap dancers named Vampira or Draculina, OK? Oh, and if you come across one named "Hanniballa the Canniballa", run!!!

Dr. Bob

Porn Star 10 Week Test Tomorrow
More info from the mom who asked about the nosebleed

  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS



This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint