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Bar of Soap

Question: 

My question is somewhat related to using a bar of soap. But in my case, I used a bar of soap and I didn't notice that I had broken skin from scratching due to jock itch. It was really small, but there was no bleeding. Is there any risk of contraction from that?

Answer: 

Hello,

Thank you for your inquiry. From what we gather from the question, you were asking about the risk of acquisition of HIV from a bar of soap on broken skin. From the information given, this scenario is determined to be No Risk (No exchange of bodily fluids)

HIV is not transmitted through: Kissing (with no blood present), using sex toys that are not shared, non-insertive masturbation, contact with urine or feces, injection using new and/or unshared needles, syringes and drug equipment, hugging, touching, shaking hands, sharing food, drinks, utensils or dishes, sharing linens, towels or clothing, coughing or sneezing, swimming pools or bath water, insects or animals.

In order to acquire HIV the following conditions must be met: There must be HIV present in a bodily fluid. The five bodily fluids that carry the HIV virus include: blood, semen (including pre-ejaculate), vaginal fluids, breast milk, and rectal secretions. The bodily fluid containing HIV must have direct access to the bloodstream. This can be through cuts, tears, rips, mucous membranes, open sores, or needles. Transmission occurs through a risky activity in which the first two conditions are met. For example: condom less sex, sharing needles, unsafe tattoos or piercings, vertical transmission–from mother to child (in utero, during delivery, breastfeeding)

The above scenario does not satisfy the transmission equation as there is no evidence of HIV present in the bodily fluids, there is no direct access for the virus to enter the bloodstream and no high risk activity is involved.

Also, HIV outside of the body or drying HIV causes a rapid 1-2 log (90%-99%) reduction in HIV concentration.[1] Quote from CDC states: "HIV does not survive long outside the human body (such as on surfaces), and it cannot reproduce outside a human host.

Recommendation: No need for HIV test with the scenario provided, refer to a physician for other health related questions.

Regards,

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online, (Vardah)