HIV Prevention Pill Offers New Hope
The PREP pills or Pre Exposure Prophylactic pills are drugs taken daily by people at high risk of HIV infection, they are taken by HIV negative people to prevent HIV infection. Trials suggest that using PREP decreases the chances of getting HIV by up to 86%.
About 10000 people will be given the PREP drug over a three years period in England, the exercise will help identify the best strategies for delivering PREP to those that need it most, level of compliance and acceptance amongst the users will also be measured.
According to the centre for disease control in the United states, if fully complied with and taken daily as prescribed, PREP decreases the chances of getting HIV from sexual intercourse by more than 90% and from injection drug use by more than 70%.
Combining PREP with other preventive measure like condom use further lessens the chances of HIV infection.
Who is Prep Prescribed to
Prep is prescribed to people who are at very high risk of being infected with HIV
It is given to HIV negative people who have HIV positive sexual partners or injection drug using sexual partners that are HIV positive
How Effective is PREP
Prep reduces the chances of getting HIV from sex by more than 90% and from injection drug use by more than 70%.
How does PREP Work
PREP is a combination of two drugs that fight HIV. When present in the blood stream the drugs prevent HIV from having a stronghold and spreading in the body
Does Using PREP Mean Stopping Condom Use
That is a big No, No
PREP should be used alongside with condoms. This creates an additive effect that further reduces the chances of being infected with HIV.
Moreover condoms are important for preventing other sexually transmitted diseases that spread by contact with body fluids such as Chlamydia and gonorrhoea.
For How Long is PREP Taken
PREP is taken on a daily basis as long as there is high risk of getting HIV infection.
When Does the Drug Become Effective
For receptive anal sex, maximum protection from HIV is achieved about the 7th day of daily use.
For other activities like vaginal sex, injection drug use and insertive anal sex, maximum protection is achieved at about the 20th day of daily use of PREP.
Long Term Adverse Effects of PREP
The drug is generally considered safe. There were no significant adverse effects recorded in people who had PREP for five years
The advent of a preventive medication is definitely a big plus in the fight against the Human Immuno Virus (HIV) pandemic.
PREP has not being licensed for use in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland