Antiviral Pill Completely Prevents HIV, New Trials Show
Post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) drug Truvada prevented HIV infection in all participants in a new trial. The drug was approved by FDA in 2012 for people with high-risk of contracting the virus.
According to Fox News, the drug showed 100 percent success rate against 86 percent seen in previous studies. Over 600 people who began the trial with the drug did not contract HIV during the 2.5 year trial period. Most participants in the study were men who reported having sex with other men. The study showed that though they contracted other STIs, the drug could successfully prevent HIV infection and subsequent development of AIDS.
"Our study is the first to extend the understanding of the use of PrEP in a real-world setting and suggests that the treatment may prevent new HIV infections even in a high-risk setting. Until now, evidence supporting the efficacy of PrEP to prevent HIV infection had come from clinical trials and a demonstration project," reported lead author Jonathan Volk.
The study also showed that a substantial percentage of people who may use PrEP may slacken in use of condoms. Condom use decreased in 41 percent of the study participants while the number of sexual partners increased for 15 percent of the participants.
Truvada is a combination of emtricitabine and tenofovir, approved by FDA for daily use. Besides preventing HIV infection through sex, it can also prevent the virus from causing an infection in those at risk of transmission through contaminated syringes.