Anonymous
Good Day,

I visited a clinic to do the 4th gen HIV test. The nurse on duty wore gloves but after he wore the gloves, he went on to touch his desk before pricking me. 

I’m concerned that any potential fluid found on his desk would enter the fresh prick on my finger which allows the virus to enter. 

Would this be a no risk situation?

Thank you. 
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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 through coming into contact with potential bodily fluid on a desk from a nurse pricking you. 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 (see down below).

Even if there had been fluid containing HIV positive particles on the desk, the HIV particles would be inactivated as exposure of the virus to oxygen quickly deactivates it. The CDC has shown that "HIV does not survive long outside the body (such on surfaces), and it cannot reproduce outside of the human host" (1). When HIV is exposed to oxygen, it undergoes a rapid decrease in concentration (90-99% within a couple of hours), so the risk of environmental transmission of HIV is essentially zero (1). 

Although you were being pricked, even in the event that the nurse did come in contact with bodily fluid from an HIV positive individual, the exposure to oxygen, as mentioned above, means there is No Risk of transmission from this activity.  Therefore, this scenario does not meet the three components of the HIV Transmission Equation (see down below).

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

Regards,

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online, Sonali 


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1. HIV in the environment  

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