Anonymous
I have a friend that recently believes that he has AIDS but has not been tested yet. We were hanging out and he had accidently cut his hand really deep with a broken bottle. We got a cab and on our way to the hospital quite a lot of blood droplets sprinkled on my clothes and since he was in the front seat and holding his hands out of the car window and I was on the back seat when these droplets fell on me (because the driver was in a hurry to get to the hospital), I believe that some droplets might have got into my eyes, nostrils and mouth even though I didn't notice that it happened. If he really has AIDS and the blood fell on my eyes, nostrils or mouth, am I at risk of getting infected? I was thinking about looking for PEP but I am not sure if I should.
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Anonymous
Hi there, and thanks a lot for contacting the AIDS Vancouver Helpline for for HIV/AIDS related health information. It seems you're concerned about the possibility that HIV has transmitted through some droplets that came into contact with your eyes and mouth. We're happy to answer your question for you.

To understand what is required for a transmission to occur, we encourage you to check out our transmission equation:
BODY FLUID
+
ACTIVITY
+
DIRECT ACCESS TO BLOODSTREAM
---------- -------- ----------------------------
• blood (including menstrual) • unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse • vagina
• semen • sharing needles • anus
• pre-cum • mother to child (in specific cases) • urethra in the penis
• rectal secretions • open cuts and sores (in theory)
• vaginal fluids • other mucosal membranes
• breast milk • points of needle injection
You'll see that required for a transfer are all of a fluid known to be involved in transfer, an activity known to be involved in transfer, and direct access to the bloodstream. Droplets coming into contact with your eyes is not an activity known to be involved in transfer, nor does it provide direct access to the bloodstream. If you check out the [CDC website](https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/infectioncontrol/faq/bloodborne_exposures.htm), you'll see that transmissions can occur but are very, very rare at an estimated 0.1% (or 1 transfer occurring for every 1000 times droplets came into contact with your eyes). This is only a theorized number, and in fact no transmissions have actually been documented to occur this way. If you went to seek out PEP treatment, the physician would likely deny it based on this exposure.

Thanks for contacting the AIDS Vancouver Helpline with your question, we hope it has been answered fully.

Trevor

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online

helpline.aidsvancouver.org
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= RISK OF HIV TRANSMISSION