Almost forty million people worldwide have HIV, and it has killed almost one million people annually, and almost 40,000 Americans will be diagnosed with it this year.

In the last 37 years, the pharmaceutical world has come far in its combatants with HIV. The average person in the 80s who had contracted HIV would have to take numerous pills, sometimes as many as 30, but through research, that number has dropped to one to three pills.

In recent times, medicine has gotten to the point that it can even reduce your chances of contracting the disease. Truvada provides 92%-99% reduction in HIV risk for people who are at risk and are HIV negative. Yet, not as many people are taking it as was expected upon the drug’s release.

Are Truvada side effects worth its ability to greatly reduce your chances of contracting HIV?

What are Truvada Side Effects?

Truvada not only helps prevent HIV negative people from contracting HIV, but it can also help treat people who already have the disease.

Most of the side effects are moderate, and may include:

  • Cough
  • Runny or Stuffy Nose
  • Sore Throat
  • Trouble Sleeping and unusual dreams
  • Mild depression
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Mild nausea
  • Diarrhea

If one finds themselves with these side effects, they should talk with their doctor. Often these side effects can be treated with certain medications to help alleviate the symptoms. But because side effects vary from person to person, and can be connected to things like your Truvada dosage: it is important to keep your doctor in the know.

What are the More Severe and Less Likely Side Effects when taking Truvada?

Although these are the secondary side effects, it is vital for you to get ahold of your doctor immediately if you begin taking the medicine and experience any of the following:

  • An allergic reaction such as hives or swelling
  • Bone pain
  • Dark or cloudy urine
  • Yellow skin or eyes
  • Shortness of breath
  • Quick onset confusion

While these things may be related to another part of your daily routine (new foods, etcetera), it is important that you seek medical treatment if they arise while taking Truvada.

Who should avoid Truvada?

Just like with all medications, there are certain people who should avoid taking Truvada. If you have a history of liver, kidney, or bone density issues, Truvada and other types of tenofovir and emtricitabine may not be the best medications for you to be on.

Is Truvada Worth it?

While many medications often feel like they are not worth the side effects: Truvada side effects come with a medication that does not only help treat your HIV, but can prevent you from getting it if you are still negative.

Every fifteen seconds, someone in the world contracts HIV. And yes, while that statistic is terrifying, with the help of medications like Truvada, you can greatly reduce your chance of being part of that statistic.

Yes, getting tested annually and using contraceptives are vital pieces in your toolbox. But taking a medication like Truvada can put you at an even lower risk. And when it comes to your health, lowering your risk of contracting or spreading HIV should not even be a tool you are without.

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