HIV - Prevention Expert Forum
Worried Dad
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This forum is limited to prevention of HIV and to safe sex in general. All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Worried Dad

Dear Dr,
My 6 year old son came back from school and told me that a classmate had inserted a syringe in his mouth and ingected dirty water in it. He told me there was no needle, just the plastic syringe.
I didnt Think much of it then but now I am. I have no ide where he got the syringe from, I dont know if he found a syringe on the ground or if he took it from his home.  What if there where some blood left in the syringe and it got injected in my sons mouth togheter with the rainwater. I'm freaking out. Does My son requier an HIV test? I mean there was no needle involved? But What if the syringe had bean used in injecting drugs? What if there was a lot of blood? I dont want to put my kid trough unwarrented medical tests.

Please advice!
300980_tn?1194933000
Welcome to the Forum. While it certainly is worrisome that one of your son's playmates brought a syringe to school as a plaything, there is no risk to your son from this event even in the unlikely circumstance that the syringe had been used to inject drugs or had residual blood in it.  There are multiple reasons I say this with great confidence including that the virus dies quickly outside of the body, that water itself would kill the virus and that ingestion or non-sexual, non-penetrative contact with blood or blood contaminated is not a known risk factor for HIV despite the fact that this has commonly occurred.  

This was a no risk event.  I'm sure that you are working with your son’s school to determine where the syringe came from and to educate your son and his friends about the potential hazards of used syringes.  While you do that there is no reason for concern related to the events you describe.  Your son does not need testing.   EWH
5 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank You Sir!
Wouldn't the potential residual blood in a syringe stay infective for quet some time (days) becouse of the closed enviroment. Even if I can't find out where the syringe came from I still do not nead testing my son? Can I drop my worrying thoughts right now! Is it conclusive?
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300980_tn?1194933000
If there were blood and it were infected there is a slight potential for the virus to remain viable a bi longer but if mix with water, as I siad above, the virus would be killed. Further, as I said before neither surface contamination or swallowing HIV places a person at risk for infection.  

One more time- there is no need for testing.  EWH
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Avatar_m_tn
Dear Sir,
Last question: So if there where no water but just blood and he got it in his mouth he would still be safe? It is hard to stop My thoughts about this.
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300980_tn?1194933000
Your imagination and fear is getting the best of you.  Are you suggesting a child brought a syringe full of blood to school and squirted it into your son's mouth- please! there are no cases of HIV acquired even when blood has been directly ingested or transferred from a partner.  EWH
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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Edward W Hook, MDBlank
University of Alabama at Birmingham
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