Some questions on AIDS

Dale R. Worley drw at
Wed Sep 30 11:18:59 EST 1992

In article <01GP4PS5ISPC0018CI at SASK.USask.CA> LEES at SASK.USASK.CA writes:
   1. Can AIDS be infected through used electrical shaver?
   2. How long can this virus survive in the air?
   3. Can this virus be killed by ethanol or detergent like soap?

Since noone has replied, I'll tell what I know:

The answers seem to be "No", "a very short while", and "Yes".  To
answer the questions you are probably interested in, it appears that
HIV is *hard* to transmit.  The only transmission routes that are
epidemiologically significant are blood transfustion, sexual
intercourse, and mother-fetus.  Even sexual intercourse is not a
highly effective transmission route, and seems to be strongly
suppressed if there are no other STDs present.

There have been various cases reported that have been infected by
other routes.  But these generally amount to less than 10 cases per
unusual route.  As a matter of personal safety, one should look twice
before crossing the street before worrying about other routes.

You can probably get more (and better) information from

Dale Worley		Dept. of Math., MIT		drw at

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