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Many people worry about getting a disease like hepatitis or HIV from an accidental needle stick. But it doesn't happen often. Most of the time, the person on whom the needle was used doesn't have hepatitis, HIV, or another infection that can be spread that way.
When the person does have an infection that can be spread, your risk level if you are accidentally stuck by the needle depends on:
If you must handle used needles, know the right way to dispose of them. And make sure to wear protective gloves.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the following steps if you have any exposure to blood:
Call your doctor right away. In some cases, medicine may help to prevent infection. The sooner you start treatment, the more likely it is to work.
If you work in health care, take steps to protect yourself:
If you get an accidental needle stick:
For more information about job-related exposure to HIV, contact:
Current as of: June 26, 2019
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency MedicineAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineKathleen Romito, MD - Family MedicineH. Michael O'Connor, MD, MMEd, FRCPC - Emergency MedicineMartin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Current as of:
June 26, 2019
Medical Review:William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD, MMEd, FRCPC - Emergency Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
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