Anonymous
So i was waiting at a stoplight, when all of a sudden a homeless man knocked on my window. I rolled down my window to see what he wanted. When he asked me for money, I felt droplets hit my lips and tongue. I have a mildly bleeding cut in the crease on the left side of my lip, my wisdom teeth are also growing in so I am bleeding a bit in my gums as well. If there was hiv positive blood in the homeless man's spit, and that spit landed on my lip cut and where I am teething, is it possible for me to get HIV? I heard that hiv transmission is possible if blood gets into bleeding gums. I am really paranoid about these sorts of things so I know I'll overthink if I dont get a clear answer, please help me clear my mind thank you!
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helpline-volunteer
Hello, 

Thank you for your inquiry. From what we gather from your question you are asking about the risk associated with saliva coming into contact with your cut lip. 

From the information given this scenario has been determined to be No Risk (transmission of HIV is not possible in the given scenario). 
The scenario above does not meet the three components of the transmission equation (see below).  In order for transmission to occur, a number of requirements must be met.

HIV transmission requires the presence of HIV positive fluid (such as semen, vaginal fluid, pre-cum, rectal fluid, breastmilk, etc), coupled with a High, Low, or Negligible Risk activity, that provides the virus with direct access to the bloodstream. 

In this scenario whether the fluid has HIV positive particles, is unknown. In addition, you mentioned that you had mildly bleeding lips. From the HIV Transmission Equation, HIV transmission requires HIV particles in a bodily fluid (e.g. semen, pre-cum, vaginal fluids, etc.) to have direct access to the bloodstream through a High, Low, or Negligible Risk activity. 

In this case, there has been no direct access to the bloodstream through this activity that would warrant a risk of HIV transmission.  In addition, HIV is not transmitted through saliva. This study on saliva and HIV transmission has indicated that "In saliva, inhibition of HIV may be partly due to several inhibitors of viruses that are present in the saliva."(1)


Recommendation: No need for HIV test with the scenario provided

Helpline Transmission Equation .jpg
Thank you,

AIDS Vancouver Online/Helpline, Sonali


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Why Is HIV Rarely Transmitted by Oral Secretions? (1)

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