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Bathroom Floor - Please Help
Aug 2, 2013

Hi Doc,

I removed my pants in a public bathroom because I was worried after the crotch of my thong touched the outer-toilet seat.

My pants touched the bathroom floor, then made contact with my foot. I then put my pants back on (w/ no underwear) and might have rubbed my foot on the crotch of my pants.

I didn't check the floor to see if anything was on it.

I was on my period and not wearing a tampon/pad, so I began to leak a little. I then went to the bathroom about an hour later, wiped myself and stuck a tampon in.

I am worried that I may have got HIV on my pants from the floor, then on my foot and rubbed it against the crotch of my pants, placing the virus on the outside/inner lining of my vagina.

What worries me is that because I was menstruating, I might have kept the virus alive on the outside/inner lining of my vagina, which I then pushed back up inside me when inserting my tampon.

Please help, I am freaking out! How likely was it that their was the virus on the public bathroom floor? Am I right that if the virus was on my vagina and made contact with my blood, it would have been kept alive, or would enough air have contacted it? If kept alive, how likely would it be that I got infected because I pushed up my own blood with the virus in it near my cervix?

Thanks!

Response from Ms. Southall

HI You cannot get HIV through casual contact and this is considered just that. HIV transmission occurs when there is a direct exchange of body fluid for a prolonged period of time which is why HIV transmission through vaginal or anal sex, sharing of needles or mother to child through breast feeding all carry the risk of HIV transmission.

When HIV leaves the body it begins to die and is unable to infect. If there were blood or vaginal or seminal fluid on the floor of the bathroom and you put your pants back on, there isn't the direct exchange of body fluid and if there were HIV present in those fluids, again it begins to die once outside the body and unable to infect.

You are HIV free from this experience,

Be well and stay safe, Shannon



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