Effective Prevention for HIV in Women
The sad facts point to a rise in the number of women who are infected with HIV. When compared to men, the percentage is remarkably higher. Even with modern treatment and certain preventative measures and therapies, the number of female victims is climbing. The problem lies in the economic state that many patients find themselves in, and certain cultural differences can also inhibit the use of certain therapies and prevention. Many patients stop or are inconsistent with their treatment as a result.
A recent development could help slow the progress of the virus by preventing spread of infection. With this information in mind, researchers are thrilled with the effectiveness of an intravaginal ring that contains an antiretroviral pharmaceutical. In tests that have been conducted in primates, the success rate was 100% in preventing transmission of the virus.
Besides its success in the lab, there are other advantages that researchers are hoping will prove beneficial. For example, the ring can last up to 30 days. There is a lesser amount of the drug in the ring than would be needed if taken orally in pill form. This helps to reduce cost and hassle, a great benefit to the majority of women needing treatment. The amount of antiretroviral drug that it administers increases, rather than decreases, over that period of time. This is due to the type of polymer used to make the ring. It expands in fluid, thus administering the drug in adequate levels while inside the patient.
Human trials are underway and researchers and physicians are hopeful. In time, adding other drugs, such as those used in the prevention of STDs and even contraceptives is a possibility. This would further widen the ring’s appeal and encourage consistent usage. For now, researchers await the human trials with high expectations.