AIDS 2012 Recap: Will (And Should) Women Use PrEP?
The antiretroviral drug Truvada won approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last month to be used as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP—an HIV prevention strategy in which HIV-negative people take a pill a day to help avoid HIV infection.
While multiple studies have shown PrEP helps prevent HIV infection when taken as prescribed, no clinical trials to date have focused on U.S. women, and studies conducted with women in Africa yielded mixed results. So, with PrEP now officially available in the U.S., will women want to use it—and should they?
In a late-breaker session at AIDS 2012, Judy Auerbach (esteemed consultant for San Francisco AIDS Foundation!) presented results from focus group studies conducted in six U.S. cities, in which women at high risk for HIV shared their concerns about and hopes for PrEP. The results might surprise you: Asked which women might benefit from PrEP, one woman replied, “just like anybody can catch a disease, I think everybody could benefit.”
Learn more about the study results—and get Dr. Auerbach’s take on them—in this summary over at POZ.com.
By Trenton Straube
Published August 6, 2012
Most U.S. women at risk for HIV are unaware of PrEP—pre-exposure prophylaxis, which entails taking daily meds to prevent HIV—but they view it as an option that should be available to all sexually active women. What’s more, their chief rationale “had something to do with not trusting what men were up to.” Such were the findings of a qualitative, focus-group study of at-risk women presented by Judith Auerbach, PhD, research consultant to AIDS United and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, during the XIX International AIDS Conference in Washington, DC….