- What is PrEP?
Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is antiretroviral drugs taken daily by HIV negative people most at risk
of HIV infection to reduce their chances of becoming infected. If used consistently, PrEP can reduce the risk of getting HIV from unprotected sex by over 90%. However, because it’s not 100% effective, it should always be used with condoms, safer sex
practices, clean injection equipment, and other HIV prevention methods.
2.How does PrEP prevent HIV?
If you have exposed yourself to HIV, for example by having unprotected sex with someone who is
living with HIV or coming into contact with infected body fluid, taking PrEP correctly can stop the
virus from establishing itself in your body. It reduces risk of HIV infection from unprotected sex and Injecting drug users(IDU)
3.What are the benefits of PrEP?
If used consistently, PrEP can significantly reduce the risk of getting HIV from unprotected sex. It is
more effective when used with condoms, safer sex practices, and other HIV prevention methods.
4.What are the side effects of PrEP?
Some people who take PrEP may experience side effects that last for a short period. These may
include headache, weight loss, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal discomfort and often reduce or
stop after a few weeks of taking the PrEP.
5.How should I take PrEP Pills?
For PrEP to be effective, one needs to take it for at least 7 days before any exposure to HIV. Thereafter, the PrEP pill should be taken once a day for as long as a person remains at risk of HIV infection (or as advised by the Health care provider). You should not take 2 pills at the same time or on the same dayto make up for a missed dose. PrEP best works when used with another prevention method such as condoms
6. Am I protected from HIV if I miss a PrEP pill?
When you miss one or more pills, you are greatly reducing the ability of the PrEP to provide you with
full protection against HIV infection. Evidence has showed that PrEP provides the best protection
from HIV if it is taken consistently every day.
7. Can I share PrEP with others?
PrEP should only be taken by the person prescribed and should not be shared with others. Anyone
who wants to use PrEP should discuss their intention with a health provider?
8.Who can take PrEP?
PrEP isn’t recommended for everyone. If you are HIV negative and at a high risk of HIV
9.When is PrEP may be an option for you if:
- You have a sexual partner who is known HIV positive and either: not on ART, has not been
on ART for 6 months, suspected of poor adherence to ART, or who has not achieved viral
- You have sexual partner(s) of unknown HIV status and are at high-risk for HIV infection
i.e. have multiple sexual partners, has had STIs, engages in transactional sex,
- You are engaging in transactional sex (sex in exchange of gifts (e.t.c.)
- You have recurrent use of post exposure prophylaxis (PEP)
- You are a Sero-discordant couple trying to conceive
- You have STI’s frequently
- You use condoms inconsistently or don’t use them or you are unable to negotiate condom use
during intercourse with persons of unknown HIV status
It is advisable for you to seek guidance from a health provider for any further clarification.
10.If I take PrEP, can I stop using condoms?
No, you shouldn’t stop using condoms. While it significantly reduces your risk of HIV infection, PrEP
isn’t fully protective and should be combined with other methods like condoms to reduce your risk
PrEP also doesn’t give you any protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). That’s why
it’s doubly important to use condoms as they are highly effective at preventing HIV and some STIs
like gonorrhea and chlamydia.
11.Where is PrEP available? Currently, PrEP is available at selected public health