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SCARED AS HELL
Apr 1, 2009

I think I am being presumptuous here and overly stressing out , its my nature.

I work in the casino environment and recently went to the aid of a guest who had a seizure . He fell hitting his head to the floor and was bleeding from the head ,

I held his head off the ground using my bare hands with no protection . The blood stained the palm of my hand and I also had a small exposed maybe week old paper cut on my finger which I didn't pay much attention to because it never bled or irritated me

As a precautionary protocol I had to go and have my blood drawn and get the base reading . My base readings are negative as of today and in another 6 weeks I am due for another test .

I was thinking of PEP program drugs but the doctor advised of the serious side affects and that my chances of infection are extremely low . The doctor said if he was me he would not take the drugs I thought well he is not walking in my shoes

The nerve wracking ordeal for me is I am already fearing the worst ( cant sleep or eat properly ) and ASSUMING this guest may be infected . I did say a prayer for him and now it is as if I am vilifying him with no due cause.

I know my mind is driving me crazy and I am wondering what if I am that 1 in a 100.

I know because of liability issues there's no way my physician or employer or workers comp could get access to this guest medical records ???? or is there a law that protects my rights and body where this person can be subjected to a test because of the direct exposure or contact with me ???

I guess I just want that piece of mind and knowing I am safe.I wish I could do the test before 6 weeks or whether there is a shorter conclusive test . Off course

I am also discounting hepatitis contamination here as well and my doctor said that may be a higher risk than HIV EVEN THE GUEST IS A CARRIER

I have read that there's no known cases of people being infected through cuts and for this to manifest it has to be fresh , bleeding and decent size, also I read most cuts have an underlying layer of protection and the virus just cant seep in if this person is infected .

Please help my stressed out mind , ANY ADVISE WOULD BE COMFORTING AND THE CHILL PILL THAT I SO BADLY NEED

Response from Ms. Breuer

Chill, please. No first aider has been infected with HIV in the 28 years of the U.S. epidemic. Those odds (speaking of casinos) are pretty spectacular.

The nervousness is natural. All of us who've waited for results of an HIV test spend the interval imagining all kinds of scenarios. But your doc's advice is solid. Get yourself checked out for HIV and hepatitis (as you're doing) and then go on with your life, knowing that you now have something many people do not have: medical records of a baseline test for both.

A week-old paper cut is a non-issue. Breathe. Please breathe. This is such low risk.

Thank you for coming to the aid of the guest. You have more courage than many, many people do, and I thank you on behalf of anyone who's ever been injured and has needed someone else's help.

Nancy



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