Anonymous
Hey,

You guys are absolutely amazing and i love how supportive you guys are. I was hoping you could answer my slightly weird question as stupid as it may sound.

So i went to this party last night and got hammered. I barely remember a thing. I woke up this morning and saw that i had cut on my finger. Let me not blow it out of proportion, it was a very superficial cut but there was blood visible. I have vague recollections of a girl biting me and then also breaking a bottle at some point of time. To be honest i really don't have a clue. I also remember inserting my finger in to a girl's vagina during the course of the night.

My questions are as follows:
1) Is a superficial cut with top layer of skin missing enough to give bodily fluids (i.e. vaginal fluids or blood) access to the blood stream and does it pose a threat of infection?
2) In case the cut was caused by a bite then can that be a risk of infection where blood from the other person's mouth entered my body through this superficial cut?
3) How deep does a cut have to be to be considered an entry point for HIV?
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Anonymous
Hello there and thank you for using the AIDS Vancouver Helpline as your source of HIV-related information.

Nothing is stupid; actually I'm very pleased to hear from you, instead of you Googling and putting yourself under a lot of stress and anxiety more than you need.

No, there is no need for you to get tested from this incident you are concerned about. Getting bitten and fingering someone (with or without a cut on your finger) are a negligible risk for HIV acquisition, which means that there has never been a reported case of HIV-infection in this way.

To answer to your questions:
1) a superficial cut does not give the virus to directly enter to the bloodstream. In fact, there has never been a reported case of HIV infection from open cuts and sores (the only case of reported confirmed case of HIV infection was a bloody knife fight during a robbery). Both parties have to have actively bleeding cuts to even pose a risk to begin with.
2) No, there has never been a reported case of HIV infection from getting bitten.
3) It has to be deep enough so that there is direct access for the bloodstream.

Because there is no actual risk to begin with, there is no need for you to be tested; however, if you are sexually active, I encourage you to incorporate an STI test as a routine check-up. It may be every 3-4 months, bi-annually or annually, depending on one's lifestyle and preference. Just to note that HIV is one of many sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

On a final note, the activities posing a high risk for HIV acquisition are: unprotected anal sex, unprotected vaginal sex or sharing needles.

Hopefully you find the information helpful.
If you have any other questions/concerns, please feel free to write us back.

Stay healthy and keep smiling,
Yoshiko
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