needle stick injury

Question

i was stuck by a hollow bore needle aftering performing blood taking for a patient. my hand bled afterwards, i did immediately wash my hand with soap and water, and then attend ER. My blood was taken for HIV screening. no PEP was given by the ER doctor. the status of HIV of source patient was unknown. and blood taken from her for testing as well. I am really worry and afraid for infecting HIV, as i know hollow-bore needle & bleeding from wound pose a greater risk of HIV infection. Dr, can you give me some opinion on my case? Thanks alot!

Answer

Hi,

In prospective studies of health care workers the average risk for HIV transmission after a percutaneous exposure to HIV-infected blood with a hollow-bore needle has been estimated to be approximately 0.3%. Your estimated risk would be even less, as we do not know the status of the source patient yet. In similar situations I've recommended the source patient be rapid tested. Results are available in 20 minutes. If negative I would not recommend PEP, but would suggest the health care worker continue with follow-up tests at three and six months as recommended in the CDC guidelines. You can review and download the updated guidelines at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5409a1.htm.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob