PEP - Post-Exposure Treatment - Los Angeles LGBT Center

One out of eight people who are HIV-positive and living in the U.S. don’t know it. We’re working to lower that percentage by offering free HIV and STD testing in locations throughout Los Angeles. Those who test positive for any infections can quickly get access to the Center’s world-class specialty care and support services.

PEP - Post-Exposure Treatment

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Recently exposed to HIV? PEP can prevent HIV infection if used within 72 hours of exposure.

Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is the practice of starting a month-long course of anti-HIV medications within 72 hours of possible exposure to the virus to prevent permanent infection. The medication keeps HIV from making copies of itself and spreading through your body.

To be effective, PEP needs to be started as soon as possible, preferably within 36 hours and no later than 72 hours after exposure to HIV. PEP consists of two to three antiretroviral medications that are prescribed by a medical provider. The provider will determine what treatment is right for you based on how you were exposed to HIV.

PEP is safe but may cause side effects like nausea in some people. These side effects can be treated and are not life threatening. PEP is not 100% effective; it does not guarantee that someone exposed to HIV will not become infected with HIV.

Learn more about PEP and how the Los Angeles LGBT Center can help you get it at freetesting.org.


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