Achieving safe conception in HIV-discordant couples: the potential role of oral preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in the United States
ABSTRACT Approximately half of HIV-discordant heterosexual couples in the United States want children. Oral antiretroviral preexposure prophylaxis, if effective in reducing heterosexual HIV transmission, might be an option for discordant couples wanting to conceive. Couples should receive services to ensure they enter pregnancy in optimal health and receive education about all conception methods that reduce the risk of HIV transmission. In considering whether preexposure prophylaxis is indicated, the question is whether it contributes to lowering risk in couples who have decided to conceive despite known risks. If preexposure prophylaxis is used, precautions similar to those in the current heterosexual preexposure prophylaxis trials would be recommended, and the unknown risks of preexposure prophylaxis used during conception and early fetal development should be considered. Anecdotal reports suggest that oral preexposure prophylaxis use is already occurring. It is time to have open discussions of when and how preexposure prophylaxis might be indicated for HIV-discordant couples attempting conception.
- SourceAvailable from: Tamaryn Lee Crankshaw[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Understanding HIV-infected patient experiences and perceptions of reproductive counseling in the health care context is critical to inform design of effective pharmaco-behavioral interventions that minimize periconception HIV risk and support HIV-affected couples to realize their fertility goals. We conducted semistructured, in-depth interviews with 30 HIV-infected women (with pregnancy in prior year) and 20 HIV-infected men, all reporting serodiscordant partners and accessing care in Durban, South Africa. We investigated patient-reported experiences with safer conception counseling from health care workers (HCWs). Interview transcripts were reviewed and coded using content analysis for conceptual categories and emergent themes. The study findings indicate that HIV-infected patients recognize HCWs as a resource for periconception-related information and are receptive to speaking to a HCW prior to becoming pregnant, but seldom seek or receive conception advice in the clinic setting. HIV nondisclosure and unplanned pregnancy are important intervening factors. When advice is shared, patients reported receiving a range of information. Male participants showed particular interest in accessing safer conception information. HIV-infected men and women with serodiscordant partners are receptive to the idea of safer conception counseling. HCWs need to be supported to routinely initiate accurate safer conception counseling with HIV-infected patients of reproductive age.Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology 08/2012; 2012:146348. DOI:10.1155/2012/146348
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ABSTRACT: HIV serodiscordant couples represent at least half of all HIV-affected couples worldwide. Many of these couples have childbearing desires. Safer methods of conception may allow for pregnancy while minimizing the risk of sexual transmission of HIV. In serodiscordant partnerships with an HIV-infected female and HIV-uninfected male, vaginal insemination of a partner's semen during the fertile period coupled with 100% condom use may be the safest method of conception.Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology 08/2012; 2012:587651. DOI:10.1155/2012/587651
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ABSTRACT: Developing and testing safer conception methods that reduce HIV transmission to HIV-seronegative partners in serodiscordant couples and reduce superinfection in HIV-seroconcordant couples is a crucial but often unaddressed component of HIV prevention programs. Most research has focused on developed-world settings, where "high-technology" assisted reproduction techniques are used for HIV-serodiscordant couples in which the male is HIV-infected. There is a dearth of research on safer conception methods for HIV-seropositive women and "low-technology" harm-reduction strategies for HIV-affected couples, including vaginal insemination for HIV-seropositive women and natural conception methods for HIV-seroconcordant and -serodiscordant couples. This review summarizes international studies of safer conception interventions for HIV-affected couples, with a focus on feasibility in public-sector health settings where assisted reproductive technology is not readily available. Given that such low-technology options are feasible in most settings, well-designed, prospective interventions offering low-technology safer conception methods need to be developed and tested.11/2011; 19(4):148-55.