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please answer
Feb 26, 2014

Hi doctor, a couple of months ago I shared a cigarette with an hiv positive friend, before I knew he was positive. I took a few drags from his cigarette. The reason I'm parranoid is because I don't remember if I had any cuts or sores on my lips. However, I normally do have chapped or flaky lips. I have heard that hiv patients sometimes have bleeding gums or sores in their mouths so this doesn't make me feel any better. What would be the chance of me actually gettinG infected this way and even if there was a small amount of blood on the butt of the cigarette, would the virus even survive once exposed to the air and on the cigarette? Your answer will really help me with my anxiety about this. Thank you doctor.

Response from Dr. Hightow-Weidman

Hello there There is no HIV risk from sharing cigarettes, even if you happen to be sharing them with someone with HIV. However, if these are tobacco cigarettes, they do carry significant non-HIV health risks, and I would suggest you consider putting other things in your mouth instead. Take care

DR W



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