A 34-year-old female asked:
Disclaimer

got a blood work and noticed that nurse touched the puncture site with unclean hands before drawing blood. can i get infection like sepsis, hep, hiv?

2 doctor answers
Dr. Erin Robertson
18 years experience General Practice
Yes, and no...: That's unacceptable. The last thing that should touch your alcohol-swabbed skin is a fresh glove. Yes, that bare finger had microbes on it that were introduced through the needle, putting you at risk for a viremia, fungemia or bacteremia which may but probably won't *lead* to symptomatic sepsis & shock. If your immune system is compromised by chemo, transplant/rheum meds, or HIV, tell your doctor.
Answered on Oct 23, 2017
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Dr. Creighton Wright
55 years experience General Surgery
Bad technique: but low risk! The nurse/ tech drawing the blood would have to have the disease for you to have exposure to Hep, or HIV. Hopefully she prepped the area with alcohol or antiseptic. Hopefully she washed her hands! For years blood drawing was done without gloves. We have better, sharper, cleaner needles and usually better technique than you saw. Report to the doctor or hospital for process improvemen
Answered on Oct 31, 2014
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Dr. Erin Robertson
18 years experience General Practice
This is an important conversation given the Ebola pandemic. Viruses like HBV, HCV, and HIV don't survive outside the body. Enveloped virion particles (ex herpes, influenza, EBV, small pox & Ebola) do, however, survive on surfaces. So, sharing needles will put you at risk for hepatitis/HIV, but dirty hands and bad phlebotomy techniques can still introduce certain viruses. Use universal precautions!
Oct 19, 2014

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Related questions:

A member asked:
Dr. Larry Lutwick
48 years experience Infectious Disease
As a phlebotomist,: You sound like your are doing the correct infection control methods. You should have already been vaccinated against hbv. No vaccines for the others ... Read More
A 29-year-old male asked:
Dr. Douglas Miller
40 years experience Pathology
Very small: Certainly if the person whose blood got on your hands is hiv-infected there is some chance, but unless you had an open cut or other wound on your hand ... Read More
A 30-year-old male asked:
Dr. James Okamoto
28 years experience Family Medicine
Not likely: It is unlikely to get hepatitis c or HIV from brief exposure to blood. Of course it is impossible to get hep c or HIV from a man that does not have t ... Read More
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A 22-year-old female asked:
Dr. Ed Friedlander
43 years experience Pathology
Very unlikely: Hepatitis c and HIV are seldom transmitted among family members living together for many years. I would not be concerned. Do try to be careful.
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