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Occupational exposure??

Apr 21, 2012

Have a question. I was working in our OB/GYN department and was cleaning instruments--some of which had blood on them. They all had been exposed to the water with disinfectant in it. I had gloves and a gown on, however when I went to pull the drain my sleeve got in soaked in the water and got my arm wet. I do not believe it got inside my glove. I did immediately wash my arm off with soap and water and then cleaned with a cavi-wipe (even though you shouldn't use those on your body) Now I'm freaking out to the point of chest pain. Did not have any open wounds, cuts etc...maybe a hang nail or two. Am I being OCD?!

Response from Dr. Wohl

There is no way this led to HIV risk. Just getting wet with water (with disinfectant) that had soiled instruments can not transmit HIV. Given your work, it would be important to learn more about how HIV is transmitted. The CDC occupational guidelines regarding blood borne infections would be a good place to start.


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