ECHO
Dear sir or madam,

I am really worried these days for two months ago there was a maintenance worker coming to my house to install the fan heater. He accidentally cut himself by the heater and start to bleed. He was standing on the ladder at the time he was cut and the blood was falling to the ground and ladder as well. The worker removed his blood by himself. However, when I saw the ladder there was evidence of blood on the surface of the ladder. And my mom had carried ladder out of the washroom after the work was done. I’m really worried that what if my mom has wound in her hand and touched the blood on the ladder. Is there any possibility of HIV exposure?

Thank you for reading my question and I’m looking forward for your reply.
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helpline-volunteer
Hi there,

Thank you for your inquiry. From what we gather from the question, you were asking about the possibility of HIV transmission from a wound on your mother's hand touching a ladder that was contaminated with blood. From the information provided, this scenario is determined to be No Risk (HIV transmission is not possible in the given scenario). 

HIV (contained in a body fluid such as blood) is extremely sensitive to the outer environment. Exposure to oxygen in an environment outside of the body causes HIV to undergo a rapid reduction in concentration (1). From the CDC, HIV that may be contained in a fluid (in this case being the blood that was on the ladder), has a rapid (within several hours) reduction in concentration of 90-99% (1). You mentioned that your mother may have had a wound on her hand; unless these were large, open sores that were actively bleeding, this situation does not meet the requirements for the HIV Transmission Equation (see image below), as the blood that was in contact with your mother's hands did not have sufficient access to her bloodstream through a High, Low, or Negligible Risk activity.  

Recommendation: There is no evidence or no documented cases of transmission. Refer to a healthcare professional for more personalised answers or other health-related questions.

All the best,
AIDS Vancouver Online/Helpline, Shirley

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Helpline Transmission Equation  (1).jpg
Additional Resources: 
(1) HIV Environmental Exposure
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