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Mistakenly shared a needle with Hep C positive person

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My dealer gave me what I thought was a clean outfit today when I copped some dope...

I got home, and when I drew up a little water to fix my shot, I noticed a little bit of blood in the barrel.

Anxious to get well, I cleaned the syringe with bleach.

Rinsed with water, filled with bleach and let sit for 30 seconds (three times in a row), then rinsed with water again.

I then injected my drugs. (goofball... .3 grams heroin+ .25 grams meth)

Shortly after, I spoke with my dealer, only to find out that the person who had previously been using the needle is postive for Hep C..

I feel like such a fucking idiot... I typically do not pull this type of degenerate junkie stuff... but it was the only dart I had, and I was anxious to get well...

Considering the fact that I tried to clean the syringe thoroughly with bleach... what do you think the chances are that I have contracted Hep C?

Thanks in advance for your answers guys. I know... I am a moron.

You'll have to get tested, it's hard to say.

Luckily there is Harvoni and it beats HepC but may be expensive.

You may be ok though. 1 in 5 clear it themselves.

I hope you had a fresh container of water for the draw.

First of all, you are not an idiot.  Most of us have done some questionable things in an effort to get well.  You know that it isn't good to share injecting equipment so there is no need for us to gang up on ya!

There is a great section in the "getting off right" download at the harm reduction coalition that has instructions on how to clean injection equipment if you are in a pinch.  Here is the link

Definitely get tested, as no one can tell with any scientific certainty what the odds are that you will get infected.  Also, get tested for HIV, as that is also passed through needle-sharing (I know you already know that, but just in case someone missed that lesson.....)

Make sure that during this "not knowing" period that you use a condom with all sexual partners.  I would definitely go see a doctor or go to a clinic and follow ALL tsting recommendations.  Not knowing is a scary place to be!  Knowledge is power!!!!!!

Hang in there and don't worry too much. Also, your dealer is an asshat for giving used rigs out...this type of "accident" is unacceptable!

Dopeless Hopefiend:
First of all... Fuck that guy who gave it to you. Obviously he knew it was used when he gave it to you, since he knows who used it before you.
You should absolutely get tested, but I think it can take a few months to show up. So follow whatever instructions they give you about getting retested later.
Fwiw, if you cleaned it out with bleach 3 times you will probably be fine. It's still a good idea to tested of course, but I wouldn't drive myself crazy stressing about it. 

Had a similar experience and didn't end up getting HCV, so don't beat yourself up too bad. As others have said, we all do stupid things to get well, but often times it's not even ourselves we have to watch out for. Hopefully the bleach took care of it, as I know a couple people who have gotten used rigs from Hep C patients and didn't contract it,since the rigs were bleached. I do feel like they let the rig soak a bit longer than 30 seconds, but honestly I wouldn't be surprised if not. I mean, we all know how anxious you'd be if you had a shot waiting. 30 seconds probably seems like hours.

My little scare was in the midst of a pretty gnarly coke shooting bender. Ended up going to meet a buddy at 5am to score some roxi's so I could get some sleep after shooting coke all night, and had to meet him at a the apartment of a guy I didn't know. While I was there, the host asked me if I would mind giving him a little shot of coke since he was letting me use his place to score, which I obliged as I was wanting sleep anyway. As I was shaving some off the rock, I fumbled and dropped it right into his spoon that he had been using all day for multiple shoots and washes. Picked up the soaked rock, broke him off a chunk, and promptly banged the rest. Five minutes later the motherfucker casually mentions that "he has hep C but doesn't know how he got it because he never shared needles, but did use spoons and cottons from hep C positive people becuause he was convinced only needle sharing transmitted it." I lost my shit because i just shot a bunch of his wash water, but he had failed to mention his Hep C status. He fires back again with the "yeah but you can't get it from sharing water, just needles" bullshit.... THEN HOW DID YOU GET IT JACKASS??? Anyway, I spent a year feeling like, in the back of my mind, that I KNEW I had it. Started drinking heavily to drown out the thoughts, and got up to about a liter per day liquor habit, before getting tested a year after  the fact. Turns out I was actually fine.

Long story short, you never know til you get tested, and while you may expect the worst and be CONVINCED that you have it, you never can be sure either way. I fucking KNEW that I had it for a year, but ended up testing clean when I finally went to get checked. Better to be sure than to worry over something that isn't there. At least the tests are free!


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