Living with HIV

Rafael

Undetectable
since 2009

Living with HIV

Rafael

Undetectable
since 2009

The HIV treatment landscape is a lot different than it used to be. Here’s a closer look at how treatment has changed over the years and what it means to be living with HIV today.

Reaching and staying undetectable has always been a key goal of treatment. And simply put, it means this: the amount of HIV in the blood is below the level that can be measured by a lab test. You may have some of these common questions:

WHAT DOES U=U MEAN?

U=U stands for Undetectable equals Untransmittable.
According to the DHHS, people living with HIV who reach and stay undetectable by taking their HIV medication as prescribed prevent transmitting HIV through sex. First, talk to your doctor about further risks of sexual HIV transmission.

How long does someone need to be on HIV treatment before the sexual transmission of HIV is prevented?
Achieving an undetectable viral load can take time. Taking HIV treatment as prescribed and getting to and staying undetectable for at least 6 months prevents transmitting HIV through sex. Viral load testing should be performed on a regular basis to confirm HIV remains at an undetectable level.

Should I still practice safe sex if I am undetectable?
Regardless of status, condoms can help lead a healthy sexual life. Unlike HIV treatment, condoms can prevent other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and pregnancy.

HOW TREATING HIV HAS EVOLVED

We’ve come a long way from the days of treatment regimens that required taking multiple pills to control HIV. In fact, multiple pills sometimes had to be taken more than once a day to help keep the virus under control. 

The treatment landscape shifted quite a bit in 2006. That was when the first once-daily, single-tablet regimen was approved in the US. And that meant that people diagnosed with HIV were able to reach undetectable with single-pill regimens, each containing 3 or 4 medicines. 

Today, there are single-pill regimens that contain just 2 medicines to treat HIV.

CHANGES IN HIV TREATMENT

Forging change in HIV treatment also means looking at how people with HIV live their lives. With this in mind, the way HIV is treated has changed over time.

In addition to treatments that control HIV with a complete, single-pill regimen, there is also a complete long-acting injectable option for people who've reached undetectable. This HIV treatment is given only once a month.*

You'll take about a month of once-daily starter pills before beginning CABENUVA. Stay under the care of your doctor during treatment. 

Michelle

Undetectable since 1998

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