New Drug Reduces Risk of HIV Transmission
August 21, 2012
Last month the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first pill designed to inhibit the transmission of HIV. When compared to a placebo, the pill, which is called Truvada and taken once a day, was found to reduce the risk of transmitting HIV between partners by 42 percent and by 75 percent when couples also used condoms routinely.
This is a landmark discovery on the path to fighting HIV/AIDS, and one that will mean a world of difference to couples in which only one of the partners is infected. And though the FDA’s press statement on the drug did state that other preventative practices should be used while taking Truvada, including safer sex practices, risk reduction, counseling and regular HIV testing, FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg called the approval “an important milestone in our fight against HIV.” Although Truvada is expensive (it is expected to cost at least $13,900 a year), it will hopefully dramatically reduce the number of HIV infections that occur in the U.S.
One thing that Truvada provides to all though is hope for a future in which HIV will be drastically diminished or even eradicated.