Jul 10, 2001
I am a care asisstant for elderly people and i recently shaved an elderly male residents face with a disposable razor, and forgot to wear gloves.I cut his face in 3 places and he bled (like little spots/cuts from shaving)by accident. I am not sure whether or not i "nicked" my skin on my finger/hand, although i did not bleed but i have a small cut on my thumb. I later noticed that the man had a mark on his forehead (like tom hanks in philadelphia)and i am now worried that he has HIV,because of the cut and also because i put my hands in the water that i rinsed the razor in.Please help me?
Response from Mr. Kull
It is unlikely that you were infected with HIV in the incident you describe, but infection is possible anytime HIV infected blood comes into contact with your bloodstream or mucous membranes. It is understandable that you might be anxious about this incident, but be careful about making assumptions about another person's status and try not to revise history (you might have nicked yourself? It seems like you would have recognized that).
Try to remember to follow your institution's infection control protocol in the future to help reduce any anxiety you might experience when coming into contact with others.
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