Anonymous

Dear all,
If a baby (2 years old) gets a soother in mouth, and some minutes before the soother was touched by somebody hiv+ with a bleeding scratch, does that pose a risk to baby? I understand that HIV dies upon air but a soother has a place where 2 parts are connected and the hole between them is extremely small. I don’t know if it can be called airtight, but if that person scratch touched directly that hole and some blood got trapped is it a risk? There was no visible blood in the soother and the amount of it in that hole would be very small, but I’m still very nervous if my baby needs medication. 

Many thanks! 

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helpline-volunteer

Hello,


Thank you for your inquiry. From what we gather from the question, you were asking about the risk of a baby acquiring HIV from sucking on a soother that was previously touched by someone with a bleeding cut. From the information given, this scenario is determined to be No Risk (transmission of HIV is not possible in the given scenario).

The scenario mentioned above does not meet the three components of the transmission equation. It does not satisfy the equation because exposure to oxygen would render the HIV virus inactive, there is no risky activity occurring, and the baby's mouth would not provide direct access to the bloodstream.
Helpline Transmission Equation .jpgEven if blood containing the HIV virus got into the small hole on the soother, it would still be rendered inactive as the hole is very likely not 100% airtight (1). It is important to note that most people living with HIV access medication to control the virus, thus lowering the level of virus in their blood to undetectable levels. So, even if you come into contact with blood from an individual living with HIV, it is very unlikely to lead to acquisition of HIV since someone with an undetectable viral load is unable to transmit the virus (2).

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

Regards,

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online, Marie
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1) Survival of HIV in the Environment
2) U=U

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