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Can I get HIV from tears and hugging?

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Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 1390 Questions
I hugged a person who was crying. Our face cheeks came into contact for about 3 to 4 seconds.
The girl might be HIV positive. I cannot confirm that. 5 minutes later I went into my home and washed my hands and then after another few minutes I wiped the side of my face with 70% isopropyl alcohol on a paper towel and after another 10 minutes, and after the alcohol dried, I cupped my hand with tap water and washed the alcohol off but using this method some of the wash water seeped into my mouth. Could I have possibly put myself at risk for contracting HIV. I am married for 35 years to the same woman, we are totally monogamous. I have a phobic fear of HIV and all STDS for that matter.
If you can give me a definitive answer to my question it would be greatly appreciated.
I had no open cuts etc. on my face and no blood was observed at all.
Posted Wed, 23 May 2012 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 12 hours later
Thanks for writing in.
I would like to reassure you that HIV does not spread by tears , urine ,sweat, saliva, casual contact, sharing of clothes, plates etc.
In your case, there was no visible blood or cuts on your skin so the chances are almost minimized.
For your information, I would like to add that the main ways in which someone can become infected with HIV are:
-Unprotected penetrative sex with someone who is infected.
-Injection or transfusion of contaminated blood or blood products, donation of semen (artificial insemination), skin grafts or organ transplants taken from someone who is infected.
-From an infected mother to her baby; this can occur during pregnancy, at birth and through breastfeeding.
-Sharing unsterilized injection equipment that has previously been used by someone who is infected.
Avoiding these situations and using appropriate precautions is the best way forward.
Hope this helps. I would be available for follow ups.
Dr Sudarshan
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Can I get HIV from tears and hugging? 15 hours later
Doctor this is the first chance I have had to view your answer.
Could you say that considering all the factors I described, the lack of contact, with any of the fluids that infect, blood, vaginal fluid, etc. plus the factors of drying
time, (my face was completely dry before any wash water seeped into my mouth) and the fact that this was a very brief casual encounter, and absolutely NOTHING to do with sex, after all this could you say that my chance of being infected here with HIV is virtually zero. If so it would psycologically help me very much.
Thank you XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 20 hours later

I am sorry for a delayed reply it was a hectic day for me.

According to the events described by you earlier there is absolutely zero risk of HIV transmission .

The suspicion of transmitting the virus can really cause you immense stress and deteriorate general health. Leave the thoughts and move on with your life.

Dr Sudarshan
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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