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TheBugDoctor, Doctor (MD)
Category: HIV and AIDS
Satisfied Customers: 1747
Experience:  I am a Board Certified Infectious Diseases physician with many years experience treating a broad range of infectious diseases.
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I work in an ER and was in the room with a patient with

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I work in an ER and was in the room with a patient with HIV/AIDS. I adjusted the pulse ox on the patient and stood back to watch the monitor. Then I noticed that I was bleeding on my finger. I did not feel myself get stuck with anything and there were no needles or any sharps in his bed. I feel like my risk of transmission is very low but I am going to get tested in 6 weeks and 12 weeks. I have an 8 month old baby that I am breastfeeding and I am paranoid that I should stop breastfeeding. What do you think?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: HIV and AIDS
Expert:  TheBugDoctor replied 6 years ago.

Please clarify further the circumstance-

You had blood on your finger- but was it your blood? Did you have a cut on your finger that was bleeding?

Or was it the patient's blood? And if so- was your skin intact with just his blood on the surface?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
It was my blood. I had a little cut on my finger. I'm not sure how I got cut. I never felt myself get cut. I just adjusted his finger pulse ox and that didn't work so I put a new pulse ox on his ear. I never felt anything cut me. Then about a minute later, I noticed some blood on my finger. I went and washed off what I thought was his blood and turns out, I had been cut on something at sometime. I'm not sure when it happened (before, during, or after my patient encounter?) I looked around the bed for any sharps, but there were none. I have no idea what cut me?
Expert:  TheBugDoctor replied 6 years ago.


Well, I would say your risk of HIV is essentially zero-

You may have cut yourself on something without knowing it-

but without exposure to contaminated blood from the patient, you would not have been exposed to HIV.

Now I am sure you could come up with some paranoid ideas about how you may be exposed to his blood, but that would not sound likely.

I would not recommend any post-exposure prophylaxis to you (PEP).

Frankly I don't even consider this an exposure, and would not necessarily do follow up testing, but I suspect you want to for your piece of mind.

I would not stop breastfeeding either due to this event, assuming you are not infected at baseline.

Good luck

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