From Our 2011 Archives
How to Use Pills to Prevent HIV
CDC: HIV Prevention Pills Only for Men Having Sex With Men
By Daniel J. DeNoon
Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD
Jan. 27, 2011 -- The CDC has issued early recommendations for the use of AIDS drugs to prevent HIV infection of men who have high-risk sex with men.
The preliminary guidelines follow last November's groundbreaking report that daily use of the AIDS drug Truvada lowers men's risk of HIV infection. This strategy, called pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP, can cut HIV risk by as much as 92% in men who take the pill every day.
But there's a catch. Several catches. For example:
U.S. public health agencies are developing PrEP guidelines. But since the news is out -- and men already are asking their doctors whether PrEP is right for them -- the CDC today issued preliminary guidelines.
Since PrEP was tested only in men (and male-to-female transgendered women), PrEP should be given only to biological males. Men eligible for PrEP should be at high risk of HIV infection -- that is, they should frequently change sexual partners or have concurrent partners in a region with high HIV prevalence.
Preliminary PrEP Guidelines
Here's the CDC's basic advice:
Before starting PrEP:
When starting PrEP:
When PrEP is discontinued:
The CDC's full preliminary PrEP guidelines appear in the Jan. 28 issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
SOURCE: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Jan. 28, 2011; vol 60: pp 65-68.
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- The Top 10 Myths and Misconceptions About HIV and AIDS