Hi, thanks for the work you do in helping people from all over the world.

I've found myself in a situation where I thought I might be at risk of contracting HIV, and since that, everything scares me. I can't have a normal day without the fear of contracting HIV.

If I have got some bodily fluid containing HIV on my hand, and go to the bathroom to thoroughly wash my penis and anus with that same hand that has HIV bodily fluid on it, am I at risk of contracting HIV? I've seen your HIV Transmission Equation, and that doesn't make me feel any better because, you're still putting the HIV bodily fluid in and/or on your penis/anus.
Also, can I contract HIV if I have a bodily fluid containing HIV on my hand and I go to the toilet and touch my penis and/or anus while wiping?
Another thing that scares me, and is getting in the way of basic daily functions is using soap. I use a liquid shower soap when I clean myself. Is it possible for HIV to survive in liquid shower soap and then contract the HIV that was in the very same liquid shower soap?

Please help. I don't want to leave the house or interact with people because I'm so scared.

Thank you for your inquiry. From what we gather from the question you are concerned about your risk of acquiring HIV if you have bodily fluid containing HIV on your hand, and proceed to touch your penis and/or anus while going to the toilet, or washing your penis and/or anus. 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 HIV transmission equation.

* It does not satisfy the equation because for transmission to occur HIV must have direct access to the blood stream. Washing your penis and anus, or wiping after using the toilet are not activies that provide direct access to your bloodstream.

* HIV does not survive long outside the human body (such as on surfaces or in liquid soap), and it cannot reproduce outside a human host. (1)

The above indicates that although there was body fluid present that eventually came into contact with sensitive mucousal membranes, there fails to be direct access to your bloodstream. By this we mean, you would need HIV positive body fluid to come into direct contact with your bloodstream without having been exposed to environmental circumstances. HIV transmission occurs most commonly through high risk human to human contact, such as unprotected vaginal or anal intercourse or sharing needles.

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

Regards, AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online, Hilary

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