Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)
is an emergency treatment that can reduce your
chances of becoming infected with HIV, the virus
that causes AIDS, after you had a high risk
exposure, for example unprotected sex or sharing
needles. The treatment is an emergency because
the medical services must begin at the very latest
72 hours (3 days) after the exposure. The sooner you
begin PEP treatment, the more effective it will be.
PEP consists of 28 days of antiretroviral drug
therapy - medicines in pill form that slow down or
stop HIV from reproducing in the body.
Antiretroviral drugs are the type of medicine that
HIV-positive people take to stay healthy.