US Government Backs HIV Prevention Pill with 90% Success Rate

US Government Backs HIV Prevention Pill with 90% Success Rate

Truvada HIV 310x

Truvada and other "PrEP" medicine can reduce the risk of infection by up to 92 percent.

If new medication is put in the hands of the right people, HIV could soon be a thing of the past in the United States.

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) is backing an aggressive new campaign about PrEP, or Pre-exposure prophylaxis, medication. This new regiment can be taken by HIV-negative men and women, effectively acting as preventive care.

In up to 92 percent of recorded cases, those on PrEP medication who came in contact with HIV were not infected by the virus. In a country that sees 50,000 or so new cases of HIV infection every year, that success rate could see to thousands of lives saved, or changed.

Truvada is the most popular PrEP-type drug, but it's expensive -- $13,000 a year if you're taking it every day. But Truvada is covered by most insurance plans, according to The Verge.

The drug's existence is only half the battle, as doctors and government officials alike need time and resources to widely integrate PrEP medication into treatment plans, health campaigns, and the like. Also, as with any medication, there are side effects, including liver problems, and lactic acidosis.

Source: The Verge

Image Credit: Getty Images

Permalink

Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

Yeah, basically this. An you wrote it better than i ever could. Just wear a condom and try not to sleep with some grotty bar hag. :-) Im sure people will see it as "i can have lots of sex now i have a pill" but is it worth it? Especially as HIV is a life long disease. Just not worth the risk until you know your partner is clear.

PrEP medication is not being suggested as an alternative to condoms. Check out The Verge post I linked to, and they go pretty in-depth about that aspect of the regimen.

-Devin Connors

SonOfVoorhees:

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

Yeah, basically this. An you wrote it better than i ever could. Just wear a condom and try not to sleep with some grotty bar hag. :-) Im sure people will see it as "i can have lots of sex now i have a pill" but is it worth it? Especially as HIV is a life long disease. Just not worth the risk until you know your partner is clear.

You realize that condoms don't actually stop STIs right? Only STIs that would be passed through direct contact with your penis are somewhat stopped. This medication also has a hell of a lot more uses outside of America as well, my immediate thought would be for sending it to poorer countries who have massive problems with HIV and by connection, AIDS.

Samsont:
SNIP

You realize that condoms don't actually stop STIs right? Only STIs that would be passed through direct contact with your penis are somewhat stopped. This medication also has a hell of a lot more uses outside of America as well, my immediate thought would be for sending it to poorer countries who have massive problems with HIV and by connection, AIDS.[/quote]

You can only do what you can. Which is why im picky and dont sleep with any old slag that looks my way. :-) Though i am guessing they will flog this medicine over seas in Africa to make money. After all a pill thats taken as prevention can be taken for your whole life. A cure would stop the money train. Thing is, in parts of Africa they still believe sex with a virgin can cure HIV so you would need more than a pill. More like education.

A preventative pill can be good, lets hope people dont get stupid when taking it and think they are protected and bare back with everyone.

Eh, that's interesting. Too bad it won't go where it's most needed the world at that cost. But drug patents will handily dispense of any hopes of places like any of the many African countries where it's actually an epidemic. But, it's a beginning I guess. Also, what are the odds of a lot of people in Africa even taking it if they happen to have access to it I guess. In the end, education trumps all.

Also, for the condom comment people: Of course people should use condoms, but condoms are not 92% effective for preventing a person from contracting HIV. I'm not 100% sure on that, but that was pretty health class 101 in reference to STD's. Maybe that has changed and I'm just an old ass man now.

Devin Connors:
PrEP medication is not being suggested as an alternative to condoms. Check out The Verge post I linked to, and they go pretty in-depth about that aspect of the regimen.

-Devin Connors

I know but people would only see as far as the 90% protection part.We live in a world with so many protective measure how come we still have unwanted pregnancies? Its why car accidents haven't lowered as the more safety features in your car make you fill more invincible so you speed more. Its just crazy. Atleast this pill can help a lot of people.

Samsont:

SonOfVoorhees:

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

Yeah, basically this. An you wrote it better than i ever could. Just wear a condom and try not to sleep with some grotty bar hag. :-) Im sure people will see it as "i can have lots of sex now i have a pill" but is it worth it? Especially as HIV is a life long disease. Just not worth the risk until you know your partner is clear.

You realize that condoms don't actually stop STIs right? Only STIs that would be passed through direct contact with your penis are somewhat stopped. This medication also has a hell of a lot more uses outside of America as well, my immediate thought would be for sending it to poorer countries who have massive problems with HIV and by connection, AIDS.

Erm. Yes true in a way. But then again this medication won't stop you from getting hep c either? The best way to not get an std is by not having sex. Kissing can get you infected with aids. If you have a small cut on the inside of your mouth. However, thos chances are slim. Hell, you can have unprotected sex with someone infected with aids and there won't be a 100% chance of infection. It differs between men and women as well. Condoms are still your surest bet if you have vaginal or anal sex. Use them as well for oral sex. And my main gripe is taking a completely new drug every day for an extended period of time. That is just not a good idea. Wait for other people to do it for 20 years and if there are still no new (terrible) side effects after that. Then you are good to go. Shit, even motilium is under debate because they found some new side effects.

2014 - a preventative medication against AIDS. Nice

Now my question is, how em i going to scare my kids from having sex until an appropriate age without a life long decease that can kill them.

All joking aside, this is incredible news, I would still use rubber over it, but it is great news in the end.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

WendelI:
I would still use rubber over it, but it is great news in the end.

SonOfVoorhees:
snip

You know, you can get HIV through other types of contact. I'd just assumed that this $13,000/yr medication that's covered by insurance was to add a layer of protection to EMS/First Responders, Doctors, Nurses, etc., the people who may come in contact with HIV/AIDS carriers in the course of their work frequently, rather than just adding a layer of protection for a really well-off swinger first adopter.

tangoprime:

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

WendelI:
I would still use rubber over it, but it is great news in the end.

SonOfVoorhees:
snip

You know, you can get HIV through other types of contact. I'd just assumed that this $13,000/yr medication that's covered by insurance was to add a layer of protection to EMS/First Responders, Doctors, Nurses, etc., the people who may come in contact with HIV/AIDS carriers in the course of their work frequently, rather than just adding a layer of protection for a really well-off swinger first adopter.

Yeah... Because a pharmaceutical company is going to develop a preventive drug for a worldwide life threatening disease, invest billions of dollars, JUST so a small percentage of the worlds caretakers can feel safer on the job. That really is where the money is. And after they cure aids they are moving on to progeria for a really fast cash grab.

Nope, meant for regular Joe I can tell you that much. Not that this isn't an excellent example of where it could be useful. But again -> side effects. We don't know them yet. That preventive aids pill your taking now could be the cause of that giant tumor in your head in twenty years. Which is the reason I said: I would not want to take this crap. Let other people take it first for 20 years. I'll just be using a condom and not having sex with every questionable piece of ass I meet.

Maybe I will see the headline 'Aides extinct' in my lifetime. There's something.

Well.. people keep talking about first responders and that, but my first thought was that maybe with enough work done too iron out the side effects, HIV positive people could have lovers again. I mean, it's not fair, being doomed to spend your entire life without any meaningful sexual relations with anyone else because of something that wasn't even your fault, AND will eventually kill you.
Hopefully someday soon, even if there isn't a cure, people who are HIV positive will be capable of living exactly like everyone else.. even if they have the grim reaper hovering over their shoulders.

Not to be a nay sayer (this seems pretty good), but it feels like this is what is wrong with America's healthcare system and possibly the first piece of Obamacare to bite us in the ass. $13,000 a year? Because of the wellness legislation, that means every insurance company that covers this is going to be paying 100% because it is considered preventive care. And of course because the health care lobby has control of patent law, we won't be getting a cheaper generic of this for (googles it) at least five years. So that means we all get to pay for this and the company that made it can charge whatever they want.

And the on the other hand, HIV prevention is also a very, very good thing. Well, I guess it's not that much different than having socialized medicine. Still, 8% of people not helped is a lot of people.

Shiftygiant:
Maybe I will see the headline 'Aides extinct' in my lifetime. There's something.

or an hiv/aids vaccination

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

This is a wise policy. Phase III clinical testing, conducted before commercial release, focuses only on common side effects because only a few hundred people are used in the experiment. Phase IV is "post-market surveillance," or learning what we couldn't learn from Phase III because Phase III had a few hundred people and "only" a couple of years. These classes of drugs do have some nasty side effects, though usually birth defects are not among them. My real concern is what insurance companies call the "moral hazard." Basically, it's the "rental car" principle; people who feel protected from responsibility take stupid risks. That said, the CDC is staffed with people smart enough to have also immediately thought of that.

HIV mutates, not AIDS. Also, in order to mutate successfully, it needs to already be producing a great many clonal copies. Prophylaxis is easier than control once it's established, and that's why most HAART plans use a three drug mix - it's hard to successfully bypass three drugs at once.

Also, it's not really a breakthrough as much as a change in policy.

iseko:
Yeah... Because a pharmaceutical company is going to develop a preventive drug for a worldwide life threatening disease, invest billions of dollars, JUST so a small percentage of the worlds caretakers can feel safer on the job. That really is where the money is. And after they cure aids they are moving on to progeria for a really fast cash grab.

Nope, meant for regular Joe I can tell you that much. Not that this isn't an excellent example of where it could be useful. But again -> side effects. We don't know them yet. That preventive aids pill your taking now could be the cause of that giant tumor in your head in twenty years. Which is the reason I said: I would not want to take this crap. Let other people take it first for 20 years. I'll just be using a condom and not having sex with every questionable piece of ass I meet.

You have quite a mistaken view of how drug research works here. When you start working on a drug, it can wind up approved for something quite different than what it was initially intended to treat. The classic example is sildenafil, which was designed for patients with pulmonary fibrosis. They started reporting some funny side effects during early clinical trials. You know sildenafil as Viagra.

Truvada is -already- approved and marketed for HAART treatment. This new change in policy -expands- the market for the drug that was already in place. The drug was not developed for this role; it is being expanded into this role.

The list of side effects is not encouraging. Keeping to condoms seems to be a better idea at this time.

Tradjus:
Well.. people keep talking about first responders and that, but my first thought was that maybe with enough work done too iron out the side effects, HIV positive people could have lovers again. I mean, it's not fair, being doomed to spend your entire life without any meaningful sexual relations with anyone else because of something that wasn't even your fault, AND will eventually kill you.
Hopefully someday soon, even if there isn't a cure, people who are HIV positive will be capable of living exactly like everyone else.. even if they have the grim reaper hovering over their shoulders.

Odd, as HAART therapy has given HIV+ folks in the developed world a much better life-span, and we all have the Damoclean sword over our heads at all times. The death rate is of course higher in poor countries where there is poor medical care.

The side effects of the medication above (liver damage, metabolic acidosis, Hep B reactivation, others) are not stopping people from having sex. It's the dose-limiting side effect that prevents you from using the drug and forces you to move the patient on to other drug combos. The person would still be positive with this medication, and so sex is still capable of transmitting the disease. Patients taking HAART live a lot longer (Magic Johnson being the tired, old example always trotted out) and the biggest problem is patient compliance with the regimen. It's gotten easier to comply with the treatment, as early regimens used to require many pills taken at specific intervals, but it's still tough and the various drugs that make up HAART all have some painful side effects.

10-20 years of testing? I guess that's fine. . .I'll be a bit old to be having sex with random people if I wait that long though. I'd venture to say that almost everybody reading this will have settled down or given up within that time frame so waiting just isn't realistic.

However the actual problem here is the overall "I don't sleep with just anybody." Well if you sleep with ANYBODY you haven't personally tested since the last time you've had a partner you're taking a risk. You've been dating for two years before sex? That's nice. Did you have her tested? Nope. You've made the same fucking mistake. Condoms are a good start but less than 100% (So is this which is why I'd go with both.) the only people I think this drug is particularly useful for though is Africans and Porn Stars (who are tested but still have scares every couple of years). For the rest of us get your partner tested and call it a day.

008Zulu:
The list of side effects is not encouraging. Keeping to condoms seems to be a better idea at this time.

Agreed, but a caveat: the list of side effects and the frequency and severity of those side effects are very different things. For example, go look up on a trusted site (I recommend PubMed or Medscape) the side effects of aspirin and gingko biloba. Links below if you like:

Gingko biloba
Aspirin

An alarmist reading of the deadly side effects of water, all true, from the parody campaign about the dangers of DHMO.

DHMO - Stop the Madness

So a list of side effects really tells jack all about the frequency or severity of those side effects.

* - edited for a typo

Awesome, here's to hoping that in a decade or two, HIV will be a thing of the past.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it.

008Zulu:
The list of side effects is not encouraging. Keeping to condoms seems to be a better idea at this time.

The CDC only suggests this medication for people who are at high risk of HIV (active sexual relations with an HIV partner, or recently had sex w/out a condom/ shared needles) on top of existing prevention methods, including condoms, HIV/STD testing, etc, so it's not like they're asking people to stop using condoms...

@Zulu: Eh, upset stomach and nausea is hardly what I would consider serious side-effects. Though it's probably worth waiting it out if you're not exposed to a high degree of risk for catching HIV.

edit: nvm, apparently the drug's site lists some more serious side-effects. Strange that the CDC site only lists nausea and a few other "non-life threatening" side effects.

dyre:
Snip

edit: nvm, apparently the drug's site lists some more serious side-effects. Strange that the CDC site only lists nausea and a few other "non-life threatening" side effects.

The other adverse effects have low frequencies. There is a serious problem with health news reporting that when a drug lists its full side effects, non-technical readers assume they are equally likely. For example, in my post above, I linked the lists of adverse effects of aspirin and the herb gingko biloba, which most people think are innocuous. If you read the full list of adverse effects under "frequency not defined," you will be pretty shocked to see it. The thing is, most of those effects are rarer than rare. Click the link; it's a good eye-opener about how bad this type of reporting is.

Devin Connors:
US Government Backs HIV Prevention Pill with 90% Success Rate

Truvada HIV 310x

Truvada and other "PrEP" medicine can reduce the risk of infection by up to 92 percent.

If new medication is put in the hands of the right people, HIV could soon be a thing of the past in the United States.

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) is backing an aggressive new campaign about PrEP, or Pre-exposure prophylaxis, medication. This new regiment can be taken by HIV-negative men and women, effectively acting as preventive care.

In up to 92 percent of recorded cases, those on PrEP medication who came in contact with HIV were not infected by the virus. In a country that sees 50,000 or so new cases of HIV infection every year, that success rate could see to thousands of lives saved, or changed.

Truvada is the most popular PrEP-type drug, but it's expensive -- $13,000 a year if you're taking it every day. But Truvada is covered by most insurance plans, according to The Verge.

The drug's existence is only half the battle, as doctors and government officials alike need time and resources to widely integrate PrEP medication into treatment plans, health campaigns, and the like. Also, as with any medication, there are side effects, including liver problems, and lactic acidosis.

Source: The Verge

Image Credit: Getty Images

Permalink

The problem with this is that HIV is already pretty hard to transmit. This is not nearly as helpful as indicated by the 92% statistics, since the number without any drugs at all is well above 50%

thedoclc:

dyre:
Snip

edit: nvm, apparently the drug's site lists some more serious side-effects. Strange that the CDC site only lists nausea and a few other "non-life threatening" side effects.

The other adverse effects have low frequencies. There is a serious problem with health news reporting that when a drug lists its full side effects, non-technical readers assume they are equally likely. For example, in my post above, I linked the lists of adverse effects of aspirin and the herb gingko biloba, which most people think are innocuous. If you read the full list of adverse effects under "frequency not defined," you will be pretty shocked to see it. The thing is, most of those effects are rarer than rare. Click the link; it's a good eye-opener about how bad this type of reporting is.

Damn, aspirin can cause hearing loss? FFFFffffff---

I see your point. Though, many of the statistically negligible side-effects were pretty tame too.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

Well, this drug could also be used in hospitals for nurses and doctors working with large amounts of patients each day with god knows how many infections, one of which could very possibly be HIV.

SonOfVoorhees:

Just wear a condom and try not to sleep with some grotty bar hag. :-)

Unless you think that's the only way to get HIV, that's some pretty bad advice.

Im sure people will see it as "i can have lots of sex now i have a pill"

Just like they did with birth control pills. And the condoms you're advocating.

See where this breaks down a little?

WendelI:
Now my question is, how em i going to scare my kids from having sex until an appropriate age without a life long decease that can kill them.

Abstinence teachers are telling kids that condoms and the pill don't stop STIs and pregnancy (though the latter doesn't prevent STI), so why would they stop now?

Ill wait 15 years. Why this number? simple.
In 15 years multiple things will happen.
1. It will be market tested for quite some time and any quick developing side effects will show up by that time. usually drug gets past Phase 4 or fails it within 10-20 yaers.
2. 15 years is how long drug patents last. this means that in 15 years they have to make contents of the drug public knowledge and anyone can go and make it. This brings competition and makes prices go down. Apperently in drugs we have decided that 15 years is enough to make profit on it and its one of the most profitable industries in the world. In videogames however 95 years is apperently not enough!

spartan231490:

The problem with this is that HIV is already pretty hard to transmit. This is not nearly as helpful as indicated by the 92% statistics, since the number without any drugs at all is well above 50%

ok so lets assume without drugs thats 50%, with drug - 92%. discounting all the cases where you would not have it without the drug leaves you at 84% sucess rate for the drug. thats pretty effective.

If without drug the rate was 90% and with it 92%, that would be only 20% efficiency and then we could question it. Now its pretty effective.

dyre:

Damn, aspirin can cause hearing loss? FFFFffffff---

I see your point. Though, many of the statistically negligible side-effects were pretty tame too.

Aspirin is quite an outdated drug. there are less dangerous drugs with same effects nowadays. aspirin is actually one of the drugs that are on the bad side of effects for human body scale.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

Using these drugs to prevent exposure does not mean you would be taking it 24/7. You would take it before you think there's a chance - or even after - of being exposed to HIV. The only people who have to take it 27/7 are those already infected, as it prevents new copies of the virus from being made. Hence, why it's so effective as preventative care.

Strazdas:
Ill wait 15 years. Why this number? simple.
In 15 years multiple things will happen.
1. It will be market tested for quite some time and any quick developing side effects will show up by that time. usually drug gets past Phase 4 or fails it within 10-20 yaers.
2. 15 years is how long drug patents last. this means that in 15 years they have to make contents of the drug public knowledge and anyone can go and make it. This brings competition and makes prices go down. Apperently in drugs we have decided that 15 years is enough to make profit on it and its one of the most profitable industries in the world. In videogames however 95 years is apperently not enough!

Truvada is not a new drug. It's been on the market since 2004.

iseko:
Or ya know. Use a condom? Im not a big fan of taking new medication. Let alone 24/7. Id prefer it if it was market tested for about 10-20 years. I'll take new druggs if I have to. I'd just rather avoid it. I'd rather not have a retarded baby just so I could have sex with strangers without a raincoat. If it is all the same to you. Still, good to hear they are making breakthroughs with aids. I also wonder how long that 90% is going to hold up since aids mutates so fast.

I'll save myself making a long post and just say I agree 100% with this guy.

Besides that 92% isn't even close to being good enough....I mean condoms are supposed to be 99.97% effective and people still have accidents and even so, would you trust your life to 92%? nah, I'll take rubbers and an HIV free existence over that drug any day.

spoonybard.hahs:
Truvada is not a new drug. It's been on the market since 2004.

ah, good, only 5 years left then!

Quellist:

I'll save myself making a long post and just say I agree 100% with this guy.

Besides that 92% isn't even close to being good enough....I mean condoms are supposed to be 99.97% effective and people still have accidents and even so, would you trust your life to 92%? nah, I'll take rubbers and an HIV free existence over that drug any day.

92% rate is spectacular when it comes to medicine. And condoms do not protect you against HIV. unprotected sex is not the only way to get HIV.

zelda2fanboy:
Not to be a nay sayer (this seems pretty good), but it feels like this is what is wrong with America's healthcare system and possibly the first piece of Obamacare to bite us in the ass. $13,000 a year? Because of the wellness legislation, that means every insurance company that covers this is going to be paying 100% because it is considered preventive care. And of course because the health care lobby has control of patent law, we won't be getting a cheaper generic of this for (googles it) at least five years. So that means we all get to pay for this and the company that made it can charge whatever they want.

And the on the other hand, HIV prevention is also a very, very good thing. Well, I guess it's not that much different than having socialized medicine. Still, 8% of people not helped is a lot of people.

all bad stuff but i think the biggest issue with having a free market system work on medicine is the no cure all treatment issue. we are not going to see AIDS , Cancer or any other big killers cured we are just going to get treatments and prevention's that we take for life.

so yeah good day but not the day we should of had , headline should of said cured.

 

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