A friend of mine who has Hep C (not sure of hep b status) recently cut his hand badly whilst at my house. He immediately washed his hand and covered the cut with a bandage. At the time I never thought anything more about it.
It was only 3 days later that I became really paranoid that there might be tiny invisible particles of blood on door handles, light switches, taps and the sink itself. I have a little boy who is always covered in cuts and grazes, and regularly picks at scabs etc etc. What would be the risks if he did this with the virus on his hands? I am also worried that the virus was splashed over toothbrushes when my friend washed his hand in the sink.
I have read that Hep c can survive on surfaces for up to 4 days and Hep B for even longer. I did check and could see no traces of blood. Could even miniscule invisible amounts of blood still be infectious after a short period of times assuming it came into contact with an open cut (via rubbing a graze, picking a scab etc)? Or am I being overly paranoid?
Surface contamination is one of the routes through which blood borne organisms spread. As you correctly mentioned, hepatitis C survives for 4 days while hepatitis B may survive for up to 6 weeks.
Though very rare, the development of hepatitis C through surface contamination is possible. The exact probability of infection in such cases is however unknown. Hence I would advise you to get tested for HBV RNA PCR after two weeks and HCV (ELISA) after 6 weeks if you suspect exposure. Discard toothbrushes if you suspect splashes on it. You may clean potentially infected surfaces with lysol/ bacillocide.
Do not panic. I would again say that the risk of transmission through infected surfaces is extremely low.
Hope that this information helps and hope that you will get better soon.
Thank you for using MedHelp's "Ask an Expert" Service, where we feature some of world's renowned medical experts in their fields. Millions have benefitted from our service to get personalized advice for them and for their loved ones.
Do what my ex does.Wipe everything with germx. I was married for 2 yrs to awoman and she was not worried I was infected we never took precautions with sex. She never got it from me. Of course she booted me during tx. because of the anger it caused. I always resented being treated like a leper by the way.
This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.