Health care workers exposed to blood and body fluids have a low but measurable risk of occupational infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). This risk is related to the prevalence of HIV among patients, the frequency of exposure to infected blood, and the method of exposure. The magnitude of risk is thus difficult to assess for any given situation, although the overall risk following percutaneous exposure is approximately 0.3%. Risk can be reduced by paying close attention to infection control procedures and by minimizing risky procedures. Exposure management should include preexposure education and immediate postexposure care and counseling. Chemoprophylaxis is widely used despite doubts as to its effectiveness, and much research is clearly needed to develop more effective prophylaxis. For patients, the risk of nosocomial acquisition of HIV remains extremely low and can be minimized by strict adherence to proper infection control procedures.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Review Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error