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July 17, 1996

Professional Boxing, Bleeding, and HIV Testing

Author Affiliations

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Atlanta, Ga

JAMA. 1996;276(3):193. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03540030027012

To the Editor.  —As the epidemic of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection continues, inevitably persons from all walks of life are directly affected, including world-class athletes. Public disclosures of HIV infection by Arthur Ashe, Greg Lougainis, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, and most recently boxer Tommy Morrison have attracted considerable press and public attention. The issue of HIV transmission in sports settings, particularly during athletic competition, has received much of the coverage. Fortunately, we have had years to consider this issue, and guidelines already exist to protect the health of all athletes and those who coach and care for them.1,2 These guidelines, or approximate versions of them, have been adopted by virtually all major athletic organizations, including those at the scholastic, collegiate, professional, and international levels. The guidelines recommend that when a bleeding injury occurs, the game or match be stopped, all bleeding athletes receive care as soon as practical, and