After interacting with a huge number of patients and solving their sex-related queries I discovered an enormous level of lack of knowledge in the field of sexual diseases and the mode of their spread. This gigantic pool of ignorance exists due to social stigma regarding sex in our society and country.
This leads to further spread of disease conditions and with a lack of proper knowledge of treatment people tend to land up in a place where it becomes difficult to treat them or go back to a point where the permanent cure was possible.
Risk of HIV exposure
If you undergo the following encounters
– sexual contact with a person whose HIV status is unknown
– needle prick from an unknown source
– syringe sharing among drug users of unknown HIV status
– deep kissing (holds 5% chance)
– other causes of HIV transmission
Then the first thing you should do is take a PEP pill within the first 24 hours. This prevents the multiplication of the virus.
Now understand that this PEP pill can be taken within 72 hours but it works best if taken within 24 hours which may even guarantee the extension of the viral disease.
In India, there are ART centers
set up by the government where HIV patients are being provided with free medication and counseling by the government.
Know more about these centers read the following article – Anti-Retroviral Centers in India.
If you visit one of the art centers nearby your place they will provide you the medication for free in which the first pill has to be taken in front of them and then the rest to be taken each day for the next 28 days.
However, they will provide you a form to fill all the details of the encounter but this detail is confidential and a record is maintained with the government centers.
This pill is a combination of Tenofovir 300mg + Lamivudine 300mg + Efavirenz 600mg (Trioday Tablet – Cipla)
There are different kinds of regimens available over the internet regarding PEP for HIV exposure however let me ensure you this is the only regimen that is being followed in India.
Side effects of taking this medicine
This medicine has to be taken 2 hours after having dinner every day. When taking for the first time you may feel conditions like
However, these side effects subside within one week of taking the medicines and the body slowly gets adjusted.
Why should you take this?
This is the only remedy you have got.
Once you are exposed to the HIV virus it cannot be detected in the blood or the system before the window period, which is approximately 3 months, is over.
There are a few extra sensitive tests that can detect HIV at the earliest possible stage which is one week.
However, you must understand that detecting HIV at the earliest possible stage will not remedy it.
So even if the tiniest bit of doubt exists of exposure to HIV virus then instead of trying to wait and detected in your blood you should go for PEP at once.
detecting the virus in your blood will only mean that now you are HIV positive and you will have to take medication for a lifetime but if you take PEP then you can become HIV free and once you test after the window period is over you will be an HIV negative person.
If you have any further questions regarding the post-exposure prophylaxis or the whole HIV treatment, you can ask me below in the comments.
Reference/Image sources –
Blog by –
|Dr. Sarthak Chakravarty
Dr. Sarthak Chakravarty
MBBS, DEM, CTBM
DGS approved doctor by Govt. of India
Consultant at 1mg Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
Ex. Apollo Hospital, Sarita Vihar, Delhi
Ex. MO at ART Center B.H.U (NACO)
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