Risk of HIV

Should I be concerned about HIV?

The possibility of contracting HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) during a sexual assault may concern for you. The HIV virus is transmitted if blood or semen of an infected person enters your body or blood stream. Your risk of contracting HIV from a one-time assault is very low. Risk increases if there is physical injury to the vagina or rectum.

The SATC does not test for HIV when you are examined in the emergency room following a sexual assault. These exams are conducted within 120 hours after an assault so it would be too soon to test for exposure to HIV. If having a HIV test will give you peace of mind, we encourage you to call the SATC as testing is available through our office.

A test has been developed that can detect antibodies to the HIV virus in your blood. A positive result on this test does not mean that you have contracted HIV or that you will; it only means that you have been exposed and are likely to have the virus in your body. If you are considered to be at high risk for contracting HIV, the SATC doctor will discuss options with you at the time of the exam.

Free, confidential testing and information are available to persons 14 years and older at the Hawaii State Department of Health STD/AIDS Prevention Branch. Call 733-9281 from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. There is also an HIV hotline at 922-1313.