Infections caused by blood-borne viruses such as hepatitis B and C and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are associated commonly with needlestick injuries, especially in a hospital setting. A prospective investigation was conducted on a medical doctor who suffered an accidental needlestick injury during blood collection from a patient with AIDS.
The patient's blood contained 195,000 copies of HIV RNA, 1 × 106 IU hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA, and >107 copies of parvovirus B19 DNA per 1 ml plasma. It was positive for cytomegalovirus virus and evidence of a resolved hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection was found. HCV viremia was detected in the physician 15 days later and was not resolved by seroconversion after 57 days. HIV infection was not transmitted, possibly because of the immediate use of anti-HIV prophylactic drugs after exposure. Parvovirus B19 infection was presumably prevented by pre-existing specific antibodies in the patient.
Considering that many HIV carriers are coinfected with hepatitis B and C viruses, this case report support the knowledge that the risk of HCV transmission from a patient with AIDS is greater than that of HIV. J. Med. Virol. 84:897–900, 2012. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.