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blood splash to eye
Sep 18, 2001

I am a healthcare professional. While at work the other day I had just finishedfluhing a saline loc to an IV of a pt. Upon removal of the needle, a drop of the persons blood came out & hit me in the eye. What is the risk for transmission of HIV. The person was of unknown status. Thank you.

Response from Ms. Breuer

The scenario you describe presents a remote but actual risk of exposure to a bloodborne virus. The risk of hepatitis B is far greater than the risk of HIV. I encourage you to get followup treatment from an infectious disease specialist at work. Have you reported the incident yet? Please do that right away. The more time that passes, the more difficult it is to link a possible exposure to an infection.

I do not think you have been infected. The blood splashes to the eye that have caused HIV infections, according to the literature, have been splashes of substantial quantity. And they are extremely rare. Only because they are not zero risk am I encouraging you to follow up.

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