As two fashionable drugs in stopping HIV, PrEP and PEP could appear comparable. In any case, they each stem from prophylaxis (motion taken to keep away from illness). Regardless of the similar-sounding identify, these drugs are very totally different, though they each stay an integral part for HIV prevention.
The Fundamentals of PrEP
PrEP stands for Pre-exposure Prophylaxis. As urged within the identify, a person takes this remedy earlier than potential publicity to HIV. This remedy is used as an oral, every day tablet, or on-demand schedule. People taking this remedy should take one pill every day on the identical time. Because the person continues the remedy, protecting ranges improve, performing as a barrier to HIV transmission. On-demand schedules operate equally, with customers taking the remedy 2-24 hours earlier than potential publicity and persevering with the remedy two days after the prevalence.
PrEP drugs include two medication. These embody emtricitabine (FTC) and one different drug – both tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) or tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF). When taken as directed, PrEP effectiveness towards HIV is roughly 99%. Individuals taking this remedy for injectable drug use may have a barely decrease effectivity general.
How Does PrEP Work?
The essential functioning of PrEP is much like antimalarial tablets. When somebody taking PrEP is uncovered to HIV, the drugs of their physique stop the virus from getting into the cells and replicating. With out replication, HIV can’t set up itself inside the host, blocking the an infection. To attain the right remedy ranges inside the physique, the affected person should take the remedy persistently for at least seven days. For folks utilizing PrEP for minimizing danger with injection drug use or vaginal intercourse, the really useful period is 21 days.
It’s essential to do not forget that PrEP successfully prevents HIV however doesn’t defend towards different sexually transmitted infections. It’s all the time essential for folks to take additional steps to reduce these dangers.
The Fundamentals of PEP
PEP stands for post-exposure prophylaxis. This remedy is taken after a single occasion that uncovered people to HIV. PEP is obtainable in emergencies and isn’t a long-term possibility for HIV prevention. All PEP prescriptions are a four-week timeline, taken as soon as every day by mouth. It’s finest to begin PEP inside twenty-four hours of publicity, as much as a most of 72 hours.
There are three drugs in PEP, together with the 2 medicines in PrEP. Two tablets present all three medication. The third drug works in another way from the primary two drugs, stemming from totally different drug courses.
How does PEP work?
PEP stops the virus from replicating after current publicity. Anybody probably uncovered to HIV ought to begin PEP as quickly as attainable. If not began inside 72 hours, it would probably be ineffective. Cells initially contaminated with HIV die naturally inside a brief interval, lowering the chance of HIV establishing inside the physique.
Anybody probably uncovered to HIV qualifies for PEP. Mostly, well being care staff prescribe PEP for folks sharing needles or syringes with one other one that probably has the virus or having condomless intercourse with somebody that will have HIV.
Observational analysis suggests PEP can cut back the danger of getting HIV by greater than 80% when taken persistently and accurately. The earlier somebody begins PEP, the higher the chance of safety. Like PrEP, PEP solely protects towards HIV transmission. Research have proven that people buying HIV after taking PEP could relate to not beginning PEP promptly, lacking PEP or not taking your complete 28-day course, extra publicity to HIV whereas taking the remedy, or an HIV pressure proof against the medication. People are nonetheless in danger for different STDs and being pregnant.
Which remedy ought to I Take?
People wanting ongoing safety from HIV ought to take into account taking PrEP. This contains anybody who ceaselessly engages in sexual actions with out ample safety (like condoms) or these having sexual contact with companions of unknown standing. If you’re at present taking PEP drugs and imagine you may want extra safety, discuss to your physician about switching to PrEp on the finish of your remedy.
Anybody utilizing PEP greater than as soon as inside a calendar yr ought to take into account an ongoing remedy to scale back the danger of HIV. PrEP and PEP are acceptable for injection drug use, unprotected anal intercourse, and frontal intercourse conditions. Speak to your physician about which remedy is finest to your particular state of affairs.