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PEP with Truvada for occpational exposure
Aug 25, 2010

I am a police officer and was stuck by a hypodermic needle/syringe today. It is unknown if the needle is/was "Dirty" or not and the suspect is unknown. I went to the ER and they did a baseline on me for Hep C, B and HIV. The PA prescribed Truvada as the only drug. Everything I have read said there should be two drugs prescribed. Also, I am deathly afraid of the side effects? Is there any certainty that I will get the side effects and should I have gotten another drug in combo with this one?

Response from Dr. McGowan

Sorry to hear about your injury. Luckily HIV transmission from a discarded needle is extremely unlikely. The decision about starting prevention treatment in this setting has to be individualized. Truvada infact does contain 2 medicines (tenofovir and emtricitabine). It is most important to start the meds as soon as possible after the injury. Side effects are rare, there is no way to predict who would have one. It is important to report any side effects to your doctor.

Best, Joe

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