[Question #4652] Spit in eye

28 months ago
Dear Experts

I went to a shop today. A man at the counter started talking to me, quite loudly for some reason, and his spit landed in my eye. It was not much, of course, because he did not spit on purpose, but I could feel it getting into my right eye. Am I at risk for HIV? Do I need to test for it at 3 months? What he has bleeding gums? Thank you
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
28 months ago
Welcome back to the forum, but sorry you found it necessary.

The main take-home message from your question and my replies 9 months ago is that HIV is only transmitted sexually (by unprotected intercourse) or by direct blood exposure, such as with shared drug injection equipment. In theory, it could be acquired by getting infected secretions in the eye, but in the 30+ years of the known worldwide HIV/AIDS epidemic, there have been few if any such cases. In any case, this would require substantial blood exposure in the eye, not saliva:  saliva inactivates HIV and exposure to saliva in any form is not a risk. This would be the case even in the case of bleeding gums.

Please do your best to stop worrying about HIV other than by sex or needle sharing. Nobody ever gets it from such casual contact as you describe here or in your previous thread. You should not be tested for HIV on account of this event.

For more detail, I suggest you reread our previous discussion. But I hope the present reply also is helpful. Let me know if anything isn't clear.

HHH, MD
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28 months ago
Thank you very much. It is just I am trying to get pregnant, so I have the worry for nothing to intervene with that. So just for my peace of mind. I need to forget about it and no need for testing, correct? Thank you so much
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
28 months ago
Yup, that's what you need to do:  "forget about it and no need for testing".

Best wishes for your fertility and prompt conception!
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