Question | Discussion | References | CME Credit

Case 3: Management of a Needlestick Injury: Source Patient of Unknown Serostatus

You answered:

A Do not offer PEP because the source patient is not known to be HIV-infected and the mechanism of injury is low-risk for HIV transmission.

This answer is incorrect. It is true that the mechanism of injury in this case could be considered relatively low-risk because it lacks many of the known risk factors associated with an increased risk of HIV transmission, and it is also true that the serostatus of the source patient is not known. Nevertheless, the use of PEP in this situation should be considered because the source patient has a history of injection drug use, which puts him at risk for HIV infection.

Choose another answer:

B Offer PEP only if testing of the source patient confirms that he is HIV-infected.
C Offer PEP if rapid testing of the needle that caused the injury suggests the presence of HIV.
D Offer PEP with zidovudine plus lamivudine (Combivir) and perform HIV testing on the source patient as soon as it is possible.

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