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Catching HIV from Contact Sports


Hello,    I'm confused on how easy it is to catch HIV from a close contact sport such as rugby? My husband plays rugby (but not professional so there are no rules for stopping bleeding ect or first aid person). The sport is quite violent with allot of bleeding here and there and many times my husband has wounds or cuts on his hands which can easily come into contact with someone bleeding-most the time he's so busy playing he wouldn't notice. My husband thinks I'm overeacting but I'm still concerned until I have some expert advise.

I've read all the lessons a few times and have searched the internet but couldn't find a connection to this question that would put my mind at ease. I did find one website(but copywrited orig in the 80's) that said there was a number of healthcare workers who have become infected by blood spillage/accidents when it entered their body through invisible cuts around hangnails on fingers-Is this outdated or incorrect data?

I can't exactly ask my husband to stop playing or to wear latex gloves during a game so hopefully you can put my fears to rest.

Andy Velez:
Accidents in work-related situations  for healthcare workers are something quite different than the sports-related concerns you have about your husband.

Most often the work-related have involved needlestick accidents, and considering how much a part of life healthcare is the accidents are actually uncommon. And for them a special regimen of medications has been developed (PEP) which has proven to be very successful when instituted within 72 hours of any such incident.

While I appreciate your concern about your husband, reports of sports-related accidents resulting in transmission are virtually non-existent. If this was more than a theoretical means of transmission we would have known so longer before this. Bear in mind that HIV is not an easy virus to transmit. Unprotected intercourse and IV drug use are the overwhelmingly dominant means of transmission with some exceptions such as breastfeeding and in years past, blood transfusions.

If you haven't already read the lesson on this site about transmission I suggest you do that.

Take a breath and let this one go.



There has never been a documented case of hiv transmission during sport and your husband will not be the first.



The experts here addressed the issue with me as well.  I am seeking mental help to get through is a link with some replies regarding sports since you did not come accross any:


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