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Wounds and bleeding scratches when playing sports
Nov 17, 2012

Hi Shannon,

Good day. I did post a question To Dr. Erik, but as there were no replies, I am just re-sending them as I know you guys are super busy :)

On my question

CASE 1: ************** I played basketball a lot, and from this forum, I realize that HIV will not transmit through sweat. So no worries there. But a few days ago, I was playing and the ball hit my glasses which cause a bleeding wound in between my eyes (above the nose bridge). I brushed it off and played on.

At this point of time, there was another player who have an open wound at his hand. He did not touch my wound directly. But as we normally play one on one, could a STD or HIV virus (from his blood/saliva) transfer from his hand to my hand, which I used continuously to wipe off the minor blood from my wound? (which I did so 4-5 times as there was not much blood) **************

CASE 2: ************** When I was playing basketball today, the same player who I play one on one with in my previous question (I call this fate) scratched my finger web and it bled. Once I know it is bleeding I stopped, used his water bottle (dumb idea? as it may have his saliva?) to wash off the blood, then place a band aid on the wound. I resumed playing then. It stopped bleeding after 15 minutes (after I change a second band aid). Reason I am worried is that I see some blood on his nail which I am not sure whether its from his own or mine. Any risk of getting STD/HIV from this? **************

The player I mentioned was a drug addict. Should I get tested or is this an unwarranted fear? Really appreciate your view on this.

Thanks, Regards. How

Response from Ms. Southall

Hi The short answer is your fears are unwarranted! The long answer, HIV begins to die once it is outside of the body and for there to be a risk of HIV transmission there would have to be a large volume of blood for it to occur. You are correct that it is not transmitted through saliva or sweat. But if you look at how sporting events handle cuts and blood it is a good custom to get used to. Not just for HIV but for other infections. Keeping a towel close by, rubber gloves and band aids to clean and wrap up the cut and then clean up the blood.

Hope this helps, Be well and stay safe, Shannon



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