- What is PrEP?
PrEP stands for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, and it is an additional HIV prevention option. PrEP is for HIV-negative people who are at a high risk of getting HIV. PrEP is a tablet that should be taken daily for as long as a person is at a significant risk of HIV. If you want to stop taking it because you feel you aren’t at a risk anymore, consult with your healthcare provider first.
- Can I stop using condoms if I take PrEP?
No. Condoms should be used in combination to taking PrEP. Condoms protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unwanted pregnancy, while PrEP protects against HIV infection. So, take PrEP while still using condoms for extra prevention measures. Better safe than sorry!
- Are there any PrEP side effects I can experience while taking it?
According to Dr Kevin Rebe, Specialist Medical Consultant at Anova Health Institute, an EQUIP consortium partner, side effects are only p;resent in one in 10 patients. The most common side effects are:
- Loss of appetite
- What would happen to me if I missed a dosage?
You would be risking the chances of you being exposed to HIV. For PrEP to be effective you need to take it correctly. Full protection is guaranteed directly to the rate of pill-taking. When you take it everyday, for as long as you are at a high risk, PrEP reduces the risk by up to 90%.
- Am I protected immediately after a day of taking PrEP?
You will have taken the first step of getting full protection after a day. But, you need to take the pill daily for about a month before you are fully protected.