[Question #3290] Eye exposure

39 months ago
Dear Experts

I have recently ordered some cosmetics products to treat my skin . Products arrived to me in a sealed DHL box and the products themselves were packaged  in individual boxes which were placed tightly and on top of each other in that bigger DHL box (i am saying this because i am concerned about the air issue). After opening the big box it came in, i immidiately took out one other products to try it. I put it on my face and eyes (my main concern). It had a water-like substance, so could get into my eyes without a problem. Anyhow, after i used it i noticed that the little individual box the product came in had some black/brown spots on it, which i may had touched before using the water-based essence on my face. Is it a risk for transmitting HIV and HEP C if some of it was on my hand as I was putting the product on myself? 
I read here that viruses die once dry and exposed to air, but the substance was on the little individual box which was tightly packaged with other products in DHL box and shipped to me. Would virus die anyway? It took about 3 days to arrive.

Bless you and thank you very much.  
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
39 months ago
Welcome to the Forum.  I'll be happy to comment.  This was a no risk event.  It is unlikely that the spots you noted represented bodily fluids or were contaminated.  Even if they were however, no one has ever acquired HIV, hepatitis or any other STI from contact with something that was contaminated prior to shipment and then shipped through the mail, even if the shipment was through an "express" service such as DHL.  Had there been any virus present, the virus would have become non-infectious during the shipping process due to the effects of the passage of time, drying and exposure to temperatures which would not allow the virus to remain infectious.  Further, these viruses are not acquired through contact with skin or even the eyes.  There is no reason for concern and no reason for testing related to the events you have described. 

I hope that this reassurance is helpful to you.  EWH
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