Isolated HIV manicure case highlights importance of sterile equipment

Industry experts have responded to the recent story regarding a 22 year-old woman contracting HIV from manicure equipment, highlighting that it was an isolated incident but reminding therapists to maintain hygiene standards.

The story, which appeared in the consumer media yesterday, reported that a young Brazilian woman who had been diagnosed with HIV was thought by her doctors to have contracted the disease after sharing manicure tools with a cousin who was later diagnosed with HIV.

Amanda Gould, owner of Nailistics salon in Crawley and co-founder of the Nail Industry Association, said, “As said in the article, this is a very rare case. It is important however to maintain high standards of hygiene.” She recommends soaking equipment in barbicide for at least 10 minutes and between each client.

“Another method of sterilisation is an autoclave, but these can often be a costly outlay for most salons,” she said.

Debra Morris, education manager for Babtac said that problems tend to arise when equipment is not properly steralised between clients. She added, “A good manicure will never break the skin.”

The doctors believed that the shared manicure tools were the cause because the patient did not have any other risk factors, and her virus shared the same ancestry as her cousin’s, which indicated that she had contracted the disease from her cousin.

The case also highlights the potential risk of clients using manicure equipment on themselves at home.

Habia reminds therapists that its Code of Conduct outlines correct safety procedure to maintain hygiene standards.