Is It Safe To Take Prep For Hiv
Truvada and Descovy are generally safe, but some people may experience side effects. Some of these side effects may be serious.
Before starting Descovy or Truvada for PrEP, talk with a healthcare professional about any health conditions you have and the side effects and benefits of PrEP. For example, if you have serious kidney conditions, these medications may not be safe for you to take.
Also, if youve contracted hepatitis B in the past, let your doctor know. Stopping Truvada or Descovy may worsen a hepatitis B case.
A healthcare professional will monitor your liver function and can treat the hepatitis B case if it flares up.
Its important not to take PrEP medications if you live with HIV. This is because the drug may become resistant to the virus if you take it while you live with HIV.
You will have a blood test done before starting the medication and will retest at least every 3 months while youre taking it.
Where Does Prep Come From
Historically, the children of Americas elite were traditionally sent away to expensive, exclusive preparatory academies, which served as feeder schools to institutions like Harvard and Yale. Due to a push starting in the 1960s for all students to have access to education outside of the typical public school, these preparatory schools began admitting people from a more diverse socioeconomic background.
So, while the word prep no longer only refers to people who attended one of these elite schools, it does refer to individuals who identify with or are connected to the culture that resulted from preparatory school traditions.
In the 1980s, The Official Preppy Handbook was published. It was meant to be a joke, but some took it seriously as a set of instructions on how to live the preppy lifestyle. Due to many aspects of the lifestyle carrying a hefty price tag, preps continue to be from or associated with a wealthy upbringing.
One of the biggest qualities of preppy culture is the fashion, which has been characterized as a hybrid of casual and formal attire, often from pricy retailers. Think pastel-colored khaki shorts a tucked-in, pop-collared Polo shirt and loafers or boat shoes worn without socks. Many stereotypically preppy activities are expensive and exclusive, too, such as rowing, sailing, or riding horses.
How Will My Patients Pay For Prep Medication Clinical Visits And Lab Tests
Most insurance plans and state Medicaid programs cover PrEP. Prior authorization may be required.
Patient assistance program: There are medication assistance programs that provide free PrEP medications to people with no insurance to cover PrEP care. To learn more, call 855-447-8410 or visit www.getyourprep.comexternal icon
Co-pay assistance program: Income is not a factor in eligibility. More information is available at: Some states have their own PrEP assistance programs. Some cover medication, some cover clinical visit and lab costs, some cover both. To learn more visit:
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More Information About Prep
HIV PrEP in Ireland: Information booklet for people who are taking PrEP or are considering taking PrEP to prevent HIV .
Research has shown that PrEP is highly effective in preventing the sexual transmission of HIV as long as the medication is taken regularly and as directed. The PROUD study in the UK reported that PrEP reduced the risk of HIV infection by 86% for men who have sex with men . Read more about this study at www.proud.mrc.ac.uk.
In what countries is PrEP available?
Access to PrEP is expanding globally. The World Health Organisation recommends that in all countries, PrEP should be available to MSM, alongside other HIV prevention interventions. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control advises European countries to consider integrating PrEP into their existing HIV prevention package for those most at-risk of HIV infection, starting with MSM.
Keep up to date about access to PrEP at www.prepwatch.org.
Sourcing/Buying PrEP online:
It is possible to buy generic PrEP products over the internet. In Ireland, it is illegal to source prescription medication without a prescription. The Health Products Regulation Authority provides information for the public in relation to sourcing medication over the internet. View/download the HPRA information leaflet The dangers of buying prescription medicines online.
How Is This Possible
The likelihood of passing on HIV is directly linked to the amount of the virus in your blood. The lower the amount of virus in your blood, the lower the chance of it being passed on and vice versa.
When taken correctly, HIV treatment reduces the amount of virus in someones blood. When the virus is reduced to extremely low levels to the point where a laboratory test cannot pick it up, the virus cannot be passed on. This low level of virus in the blood is what is called an undetectable viral load. Different laboratories may have different cut-off points when classifying an undetectable viral load however, most clinics in the UK classify undetectable as being below 20 copies of HIV virus per millilitre.
It is important to note that a key goal of treatment is to ideally get everyone living with HIV to have an undetectable viral load. While an undetectable viral load does not mean there is no HIV present, it helps people with HIV to live long and healthy lives.
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Prep Prevents Hiv So Why Arent More People Taking It
- By Robert Goldstein, MD, PhD, Contributor
Each year, 1.7 million people globally are newly infected with HIV more than 38,000 in the United States alone. This year, President Trump announced a 10-year initiative aimed at reducing new HIV infections in the US, and ultimately ending an epidemic that has plagued this country, and the world, since HIV first emerged in the early 1980s. A key part of that plan is pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP, a daily medication to help prevent HIV that is recommended for people at high risk. Recently, the FDA approved a new formulation of PrEP for many but not all of those at risk.
Side Effects Of Hiv Treatment
People on current HIV treatments may experience mild side effects including:
- tiredness and fatigue
- skin rashes.
If you are on treatment, see your doctor every 3 to 6 months.
Regular blood tests are necessary to make sure your treatment is working and not causing serious side effects. It is recommended that you also get tested for STIs and talk to your doctor about your sexual health and overall wellbeing. Ensure you are having routine screening for cancers and keeping your vaccinations up to date.
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Who Can Take Prep
PrEP is for people who are HIV-negative and more at risk of HIV infection. PrEP can be used by men and women, both trans and cisgender.
PrEP may be a good option for you if:
- youre in an ongoing sexual relationship with a partner living with HIV who does not have an undetectable viral load.
- youre a gay or bisexual man who has multiple sexual partners and you don’t always use condoms.
- youre a gay or bisexual man in a new sexual relationship but not yet aware of your partners HIV status and dont always use condoms.
- youre not using condoms with partners of the opposite sex whose HIV status is unknown and who are at high risk of HIV infection
- you have sex for money, or receive gifts for sex
- youve shared injecting equipment or have been in a treatment programme for injecting drug use.
Does Prep Have Any Side Effects
In some people PrEP can cause minor side effects like nausea, vomiting, fatigue and dizziness, but these usually disappear over time.
In rare cases PrEP can also affect kidney functions.
If youre taking PrEP and experience any side effects that are severe or dont go away, tell your healthcare professional.
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Who Should Not Be Prescribed Prep
- People with HIV. Individuals must be confirmed as HIV-negative before initiating PrEP. Excluding persons with acute HIV infection is critically important, as there is a risk of developing resistant HIV if they are inadvertently started on PrEP. F/TDF and F/TAF are appropriate components of a regimen to treat HIV but must be combined with additional antiretrovirals to provide effective treatment.
- People with renal insufficiency. Providers should confirm that the patients estimated creatinine clearance is 60 mL/minute before initiating F/TDF as PrEP, or 30 mL/minute before initiating F/TAF as PrEP.
Hpv What Does It Mean
Human Papilloma Viruses know collectively by the title HPV are responsible for a large percentage of rectal, penile, and head/neck cancers. Men who have Sex with Men , especially those that are HIV positive are at increased risk for becoming infected with strains of HPV and therefore have increased risk for these types of cancers. The Nanovalent HPV vaccine is a safe and effective way of preventing the likelihood of acquiring 9 strains of HPV including some of the types most likely to cause cancer in addition to some of those that cause visible genital warts.
Up until this past year it was thought that it probably wasnt worth vaccinating older MSMs as they probably would already have acquired HPV and the ability of the vaccine to eliminate a strain of HPV once it has already been acquired is not known. Now it is known that it is unlikely that anyone has acquired all 9 strains of HPV the vaccine protects against, that even if you have a strain of HPV infecting at one site the vaccine my protect you from acquiring that strain at a second site . In addition it is possible although not proven that having the vaccine may help your immune system try to eliminate the virus from an already infected site.
What does all this mean?
If you are a man that has sexwith men, you are at increased risk for rectal, penile and head/neck cancersfrom HPV infection
Insurance may or may not coverthe vaccine for you ask you healthcare provider for more information.
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How Important Is Adherence To Prep
To be effective, PrEP requires high levels of adherence. When taken as prescribed, oral PrEP is extremely effective in preventing HIV. A few cases of HIV infection have been reported among MSM whose high adherence to PrEP was verified. These rare cases indicate that the risk of HIV acquisition with high adherence to PrEP is extremely low, but not completely eliminated.
Based on existing research, PrEP reaches maximum protection from HIV for receptive anal sex at about 7 days of daily use. For receptive vaginal sex and injection drug use, PrEP reaches maximum protection at up to about 21 days of daily use.
Is Prep Covered By My Insurance
In most cases, yes! Under the Affordable Care Act, PrEP must be free under almost all health insurance plans. That means you cant be charged for your PrEP medication or the clinic visits and lab tests you need to maintain your prescription. There are no out-of-pocket costs for you.
This applies to most private health insurance plans you get through your employer or purchase yourself, individual plans you purchase through HealthCare.gov or state-based Marketplaces, and state Medicaid expansion coverage plans. In some states, the traditional Medicaid program also covers PrEP at no charge. This does not automatically apply to Medicare.
To find out whether your health plan covers PrEP medications without charge:
- If you have private health insurance through your employer or have purchased it yourself: Check with your health insurance company about coverage for PrEP medications, or look on their drug formulary online to find information about coverage for the drugs approved for PrEP.
- If you purchased your health plan through HealthCare.gov or a state-based Marketplace: This NASTAD tip sheet can help you verify whether your plan covers PrEP medications.
- If you are on Medicaid: Check with your benefits counsellor.
- If you are on Medicare:Find which plans cover your drugs.
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Prep Facts: Introduccin Y Preguntas Frecuentes
PrEP, or pre-exposure prophylaxis, is a prescription medicine that you take before you come in contact with HIV that will prevent HIV infection. There are two medications approved for PrEP: Truvada and Descovy, plus a generic version of Truvada. These medications are highly effective when taken as prescribed, and are very safe and generally well-tolerated by most people.
Anyone can use PrEP to prevent HIV infection. If condoms arent or cant be used during sex, or if using clean syringes is not possible, then taking PrEP is an effective way to help prevent HIV. PrEP does not prevent other sexually transmitted infections or pregnancy.
In this series of articles well introduce you to the basic facts about PrEP:
Frequently asked questions about PrEP
There are no known interactions between the two. Taking PrEP outside the times you drink can help you avoid missing doses.
Recreational drugs are not known to interact with either Truvada PrEP or Descovy PrEP. Both medicines belong to a class of HIV meds called NRTIs that generally do not interact with drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, or MDMA. Search the HIV Drug Interaction website for more information.
No cases of this kind of transmission have been reported. PrEP stops HIV from reproducing in the body, so it cant establish an infection and eventually dies. If your partner has sex with someone living with HIV with a detectable viral load, they will not pass on HIV to you.
More PrEP Facts:
What If I Dont Have Health Coverage Or Still Cant Afford Prep
Dont have insurance or Medicaid coverage? There are resources that may be able to help you pay for PrEP and your necessary clinic visits and tests.
One source is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Ready, Set, PrEP program that provides PrEP at no cost for people without prescription drug coverage. For more information, and to find out if you qualify, see the blue box below.
Another source is Gileads Medication Assistance Program for PrEP . You can apply for this program to see if you can get PrEP at no cost, based on your income. For more information call 505-6986.
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What Happens When Im On Pep
PEP isnt just a one-time pill its a regimen where you take many pills over many weeks. If your nurse or doctor gives you PEP, youll need to take medicine 1-2 times a day for at least 28 days . Its important that you take every pill as directed and dont skip doses, otherwise PEP may not work as well.
PEP isnt 100% effective, and it wont prevent future HIV infections like PrEP can. So its important to keep protecting yourself and others from HIV while youre on PEP. Use condoms every time you have sex. If you inject drugs, dont share needles or works. This helps protect you from being exposed to HIV again. And it lowers the chances of giving HIV to others if you do have it
If you develop symptoms like a fever or rash while using PEP, talk with your doctor. These may be signs of the beginning stages of HIV.
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Ensure A Partner Is Managing Their Hiv
HIV is a chronic condition treated with antiretroviral therapy. Antiretroviral medications control the virus by lowering the amount of HIV found in the blood, which is also known as the viral load. These medications also lower the amount of the virus in other bodily fluids such as semen, anal or rectal secretions, and vaginal fluids.
Managing HIV requires close attention. Medications must be taken as directed by a healthcare provider. Additionally, managing HIV means going to a healthcare provider as often as recommended.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , someone living with HIV with an undetectable viral load wont transmit HIV to others. They define an undetectable viral load as fewer than 200 copies per milliliter of blood.
The support that someone without HIV can offer a partner living with HIV can positively affect how the HIV-positive partner manages their health. A study in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes that if same-sex couples were working together to reach a goal, the person living with HIV was more likely to stay on track with HIV care in all aspects.
This support can also strengthen other relationship dynamics.
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How Else Might The 10
Four key strategies are emphasized in the 10-year initiative and backed by the global research community:
- Increase access to HIV testing, and ensure that all people living with HIV know their diagnosis.
- Expand access to effective treatment to get people on medication and virally suppressed, which helps prevent HIV transmission.
- Respond quickly to sites of potential HIV outbreaks and populations at increased risk.
- Prevent those at risk for HIV from becoming infected.
Could Prep Work For Me
It doesn’t matter what your gender identity and sexual orientation are. It’s a good option for someone in any of these situations:
- In an ongoing relationship with an HIV-positive partner
- Has sex with multiple partners and doesn’t always use condoms
- Injects drugs or shares needles
Research is still being done on the effects of taking PrEP when you’re transgender and having hormone therapy. No bad reactions have been reported so far.
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