Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)
PrEP is a pill (Truvada) that can be taken once a day to greatly reduce your chances of getting HIV, if exposed
to the virus. If taken as directed, PrEP can reduce your risk of getting HIV by more than 90%.
PrEP WILL NOT protect you from STIs, like syphilis, gonorrhea, or chlamydia, so using condom while on
PrEP is advised.
If prescribed PrEP, individuals must follow up with a provider every 3 months to undergo screenings to ensure a
negative result and assess any other issues related to Truvada's side effects. All though side effects are
minimum, the provider should monitor the patient throughout the time the patient is taking Truvada.
- Taking PrEP once a day has shown to reduce the risk of getting HIV from sex by more than 90%. Daily PrEP use
can also reduce HIV among individuals who inject drugs by more than 70%.
- In clinical trials, some individuals experienced early side effects like upset stomach or loss of appetite.
These side effects were mild and went away within the first month. During the study, no serious side effect
- The CDC recommends PrEP for individuals who are HIV negative who may be in risk of being exposed. You should
contact your medical provider if you are at risk for HIV.
- You should not stop using condoms because you are taking PrEP. If PrEP is taken daily, it offers a lot of
protection against HIV infection, but not 100%. Condoms also offer a lot of protection against HIV infection
if they are used correctly every time you have sex, but not 100%. PrEP medications don’t give you any
protection from other infections you can get during sex, but condoms do. So you will get the most protection
from HIV and other sexual infections if you consistently take PrEP medication and consistently use condoms
- PrEP is covered by most insurance providers. If you do not have insurance, or are unable to afford the
For more information on PrEP or for all other inquiries, email us at PrEPMeSC@dhec.sc.gov