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HomeAnswersHIV/AIDS specialistdry eyesIs my dry eye syndrome due to HIV or hepatitis, which I acquired from a dirty needle stick injury?

Can dry eyes after a year of needlestick injury be due to HIV or hepatitis?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Preetha. J

Published At December 1, 2021
Reviewed AtApril 16, 2024

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

I had a dirty needle stick in my job a year back, and my last test for HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and Hepatitis was 346 days after exposure. Both tests came back negative, and recently about a month ago, I developed dry eye syndrome. I consulted a doctor for this condition, and the doctor prescribed me some medications that have not been working. My left eye is blurry, but my right eye is fine. This has become a chronic and annoying issue. I cannot seem to concentrate on anything due to my left eye being consistently blurry. I am concerned that I have been infected with HIV, and these tests are just missing the infection regarding a rare case. I understand HIV testing is not 100% accurate, but I am worried that mine was missed. All tests were used with the 4th generation.

Hi, Welcome to icliniq.com.

Thank you for the query. The 4th generation HIV tests are accurate. If they are negative, as mentioned, it is conclusive. There is no need for further HIV tests provided there is no further risk exposure. Relax. These symptoms are non-specific and are not related to HIV. Just forget the episode. Consult an ophthalmologist for further management of your eye symptoms.

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

Thank you for the response.

I have had no sexual encounters since the exposure at work since I had the needle stick injury. I did get some tattoos since then, but all the equipment was clean. So I do not know if any other possible exposures. I did want to ask. What are the chances that I could be a rare case that my tests show a false negative test even though I am positive? I have heard dry eye syndrome is 20% in HIV-infected people.

Hi, Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Thank you for the query. Tests diagnose HIV (human imuunodeficiency virus), and if they are negative, then you need not worry about it. These are non-specific symptoms. It need not be due to HIV. You can consult your ophthalmologist for eye symptoms. Forget the episode. Relax. Stop searching online. It will create more confusion than helping you. Get involved in activities of your interest. Do yoga, meditation, and exercises.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Basti Bharatesh Devendra
Dr. Basti Bharatesh Devendra


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