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HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Singapore - Shim Clinic

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a treatment that reduces the risk of HIV infection before exposure, like condom break, slip, or no condom. It works best when taken regularly.

What is pre-exposure prophylaxis?

  • Pre – before
  • Exposure – coming into contact with
  • Prophylaxis – treatment to prevent infection

So HIV PrEP is a “Before coming into contact with HIV treatment to prevent infection.”

If you have already been exposed to HIV, then you are looking for HIV post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP).

There are 2 reasons people take PrEP:

  • PrEP with condom
  • PrEP without condom

PrEP with condom – PrEP acts as an additional layer of protection, should the condom fail. In cases when the condom breaks, slips, or if one unintentionally forgets to put on a condom, PrEP provides an additional safety net against HIV transmission.

PrEP without condom – Some people in a foolhardy way view PrEP as a form of sexual liberation. They intentionally utilise¬†PrEP as an alternative to using a condom. They don’t mind getting any STD other than HIV. PrEP does not provide 100% protection. There have been failures in the past. We advice against selecting this option.

There are 2 ways to take PrEP:

  • PrEP continuously
  • PrEP on demand

PrEP continuously – PrEP medication is taken daily on a regular basis. There is no pause or stoppage of the consumption of the medication. This is the recommended method of use.

PrEP on demand – This regimen involves taking 2 pills 2 hours before sex, and 1 pill for each of the next 2 days. Study data supports high efficacy rates, however it is not as effective as taking PrEP continuously.

Effectiveness: The HIV risk is reduced by more than 99% when the medication is taken regularly.

Drugs and Dosages: The HIV PrEP treatment involves taking some of the same type of medication that a HIV patient takes. Although HIV patients take a 3-4 drug combination, for HIV PrEP, it usually involves a 2 drug combination.

References


Blog articles about #HIVPrEP


Related Concepts

Sexual risk (of HIV/STD/pregnancy), and what you can do before and after exposure.

Timeline HIV STD Pregnancy
Before exposure
Abstain from sex, Be faithful, or Condom use
Circumcision (males only)
Contraception
(females only)
HIV PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis)
– Stop HIV infection before exposure
STD vaccine:
Hepatitis vaccine
HPV vaccine
STD / HIV exposure
Unsafe sex / unprotected sex:
No condom / Condom broke / Condom slip
0-72 hours HIV PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis)
– Stop HIV infection after exposure
STD testing *
Screening test
– to look for asymptomatic infections
– from previous exposures
Emergency contraception
with the
morning-after pill
(females only)
2 weeks HIV DNA Test
1 month HIV 4th Generation Test
SD Bioline HIV Ag/Ab Combo
– Fingerprick blood sampling.
20 minutes to results
3 months HIV 3rd Generation Test
OraQuick¬ģ HIV-1/2 Antibody
– Oral fluid or
– Fingerprick blood sampling.
20 minutes to results
STD testing *
– Full & comprehensive
diagnostic test
– to look for current infections
Watch for HIV Symptoms STD Symptoms
If infected HIV Treatment STD Treatment Abortion

* Males: Do not urinate for at least 4 hours before arriving.
* Females: testing is more accurate when you are not menstruating.


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