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Possibility of infection with HIV

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Hi, I'd like to know if it's possible to be infected by HIV through fingernails which are dirty of encrusted blood (anyway not completely fresh) belonging to an infected person, and which have caused a little abrasion on an arm, I think without bleeding because the skin there was "fresh", very reddish and scraped and I don't remember if there was any blood drop... I'm a paramedic and this is an accident happened during the transport of an infected patient. Sincerely I don't remember if there was bleeding, the abrasion was quite small, and I don't think it touched fresh blood...Anyway is it possible that the virus penetrates through the derma to pass into the bloodstream or it must come in direct contact with it? I know that it can't pass the epidermis but waht about the section below...?

Thank you very much for the help you can give me...

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replied June 21st, 2010
HIV and AIDS Answer A13329
Hi and welcome to the forum! I am glad that I can help you.

You want to know whether you are at risk of being infected with HIV.

The human immune deficiency virus (HIV) is transmitted by direct contact of blood flow with bodily fluids like blood, semen, pre-ejaculate, vaginal fluid and breast milk. If undamaged skin comes in contact with blood that contains HIV, transmission of HIV is not possible. If the skin is damaged, with visible bleeding or cuts, the virus can be transmitted.

According to the data that you described, you may or may not be infected with HIV. To be completely sure, have tests for diagnosis of possible HIV infection done after 12 weeks after the suspicious event because the human body needs 2-12 weeks to develop antibidies against this virus. You may also note that doctors, nurses and paramedics should wear medical gloves because they come in contact with blood frequently.

Please keep in mind that I provide medical information only. I am not able to diagnose medical conditions online. Please contact your doctor for further advice and information about diagnosis and treatment options.

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