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Can HIV be contracted through cooking and sharing food?

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Posted on Tue, 26 May 2015
Question: Recently on a trip my aunt told me she was HIV positive and on medication. She has been on the medication for three years now and says her viral load is undetectable. Before she told me this we spent the week cooking together. I did not see her cut herself ever but heard her remark when using lemons that it "stung" on her cut. In the meanwhile I have a failed root canal that I am getting out soon, this leaves a gap open to an infection in my jaw. I am on antibiotics but I am so petrified that I have HIV. I got a rash on my chest when I got back home three days later and it's all I can think about. I know that I need to tell my husband but I am so scared about what he will think and if he will leave me. Do you think that there is a possibility that through saliva or blood that I have infected myself with HIV via the tooth? Please help me. I have gone to two doctors who both freaked out and I have called the CDC and the local agency. I am getting tested at the 2 week mark. I cannot sleep or eat, I am sick about it.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (16 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Allay fears.Chances of HIV transmission is nil.

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thank you for query. I am Dr Bharatesh D Basti answering your query.
Welcome to health care magic. I have gone through the details and can make out your anxiety.

HIV is not transmitted through food or fomites.The chances of transmission of HIV through oral route is nil ,unless there is a bleeding wound in oral cavity.Failed Root canal will have a healed wound.There is no possibility of transmission of HIV.
Moreover the chances of blood of positive person being swallowed by you is nil.Moreover she has undetected viral load. So possiblity of HIV presence in it is also nil.
So you can allay fears of HIV.

I do not see possibility of HIV transmission by modes described.I do not see need for HIV tests.
If you are still anxious you can go for HIV 1&2 RNA PCR at this stage to relieve your anxiety.

You can get back for any clarification.
Thank you
Dr Bharatesh D Basti
Dermatologist and venerologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (1 hour later)
Hello Dr. Basti,


Thank you for your quick answer! Two more questions, The failed root canal is infected though, so it is not bloody but it is vulnerable. Does this change your view on my chances of contracting HIV through the failed root canal? Also, the thing Im most scared about is telling my husband. Would you tell him if you were in my position or does the Nil status of the issue negate my need to tell him?



Thank you for your help. It is much nicer to have someone explain this to me than to treat me like a leper

Lastly, Do you feel like the rash has anything to do with this? I saw that a rash was a symptom of contracting HIV in the initial stages. it's on my chest only.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (48 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Transmission of HIV unlikely.

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thank you for follow up query.

If the wound is infected there is minimal possibility of transmission of HIV virus if exposed. But the chances of HIV in food is nil.Moreover the viral load in the person is undectable. So chances is nil.
So get tested as explained earlier to be relieved of anxiety.

Regarding the disclosure it is better to explain him the issue and disclose . He may give you confidence and support to overcome the situation.
You will be relieved of worry of not disclosing it.It is a trivial issue and nothing to worry.

The rash may be due to sweat rash or fungal infection. There is no specific rash of HIV .You can get back with clear photos for clarification or consult your doctor for examination .

You can get back for any clarification.
Thank you
Dr Bharatesh D Basti



Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (1 hour later)
Thank you very much Dr. Basti. I am getting tested on Monday, which will be the 2 week mark. Is that too soon? Someone told me that was the soonest and then the 3 month and 6 month mark to be totally sure. This should be my last question. You have been very helpful and I really am wishing that everything is ok. My life would be over if I was positive. We have just started talking about having kids.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (8 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
HIV RNA PCR is >99% sensitive at 14 days.

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thank you for follow up query ,compliments and wishes .

I do not see any possibility of transmission of HIV.
You can allay fears.
The HIV RNA PCR test is >99% sensitive after 10 days.So you can allay fears if it comes negative and it will in all probability come negative.
Antibodies test may take 2-6 weeks, maximum of 12 weeks/3 months to appear.Antibodies test after 2 weeks may not be helpful or conclusive.
Conclusive test will be after 3 months for HIV antibodies.
Wish you good health. You can lead a normal life without any worries or fears.
You can get back for any clarification.

Wish you good health.
Thank you
Dr Bharatesh D Basti

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (50 minutes later)
Hello Dr. Basti,

Thank you again. I will follow the course that you have listed above and recognize your professional advice.

One other tiny question that I know you have probably answered, If a person is HIV positive and you are talking with them and they accidentally spit a little in your eye is that a risk?

This is the last question I need answered to feel at ease a little bit.
I wish I could send you a box of chocolates for your patience and help.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti (6 hours later)
Brief Answer:
No possibility of transmission of HIV.

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thank you for follow up query and the wishes and compliments.I would love chocolates. If you are happy and relived of worries ,we will be more happier than chocolates.

Saliva does not transmit HIV .So spit falling on mucus membranes like eyes does not transmit HIV. So you can allay fears of HIV.

It is kind of you that you spend time with your aunt despite knowing her hiv status.Hope next time you be safe when you are with your aunt.

You can get back for any clarification.We will try to help you.
Thank you
Dr Bharatesh D Basti.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
doctor
Answered by
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Dr. Bharatesh Devendra Basti

Dermatologist

Practicing since :1998

Answered : 1764 Questions

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Can HIV be contracted through cooking and sharing food?

Brief Answer: Allay fears.Chances of HIV transmission is nil. Detailed Answer: Hi Thank you for query. I am Dr Bharatesh D Basti answering your query. Welcome to health care magic. I have gone through the details and can make out your anxiety. HIV is not transmitted through food or fomites.The chances of transmission of HIV through oral route is nil ,unless there is a bleeding wound in oral cavity.Failed Root canal will have a healed wound.There is no possibility of transmission of HIV. Moreover the chances of blood of positive person being swallowed by you is nil.Moreover she has undetected viral load. So possiblity of HIV presence in it is also nil. So you can allay fears of HIV. I do not see possibility of HIV transmission by modes described.I do not see need for HIV tests. If you are still anxious you can go for HIV 1&2 RNA PCR at this stage to relieve your anxiety. You can get back for any clarification. Thank you Dr Bharatesh D Basti Dermatologist and venerologist