What is the role in topical antivirals in the prevention of HIV infection?

Updated: Jul 27, 2020
  • Author: Shelley A Gilroy, MD, FACP, FIDSA; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Topical antivirals could potentially help with preventing transmission, but studies to date have failed to produce positive results. For example, a double-blinded, randomized, controlled trial of a vaginal microbicide gel with in vitro activity against HIV failed to show protective effects. The study involved 9385 women from South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia who used a synthetic naphthalene sulphonate polymer. Infection rates per 100 person-years were similar between groups (4.7 for 2% gel, 4.6 for 0.5% gel, and 3.9 for placebo).

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