Sunday, October 5, 2014

To PrEP or not to PrEP?

Still debating whether we should use PrEP for Baby #2.  Husband says yes, I say maybe not. He has been undetectable for over 10 years (with a slight blip here and there), and I'm not sure I want to expose the baby or myself to the potent medication that is PrEP...

3 years ago I wouldn't even have thought there would be a choice between taking PrEP or not, but the more I research and learn about an undetectable viral load, the more I'm learning that the risks to me are minimal.  But are they minimal enough for me to have condom-less sex in hopes of conceiving?

My parents freaked out when they learned that I used PrEP to get pregnant the first time, they felt the risk I took was careless and the decision wreckless, but they finally came around once they believed I remained negative and the baby was healthy and growing normally with no defects. (Yes, my parents sometimes think that I'm lying about my negative status and that long ago I may have contracted HIV from my mom demanded to see my HIV negative blood test before she could celebrate having her first grandchild...but hey, I give people room to react remember?)

I have to admit, even though I found a doctor to prescribe me PrEP before, I am a bit nervous about bringing it up with a new doctor--given my first experience.  Read about it here. The last doctor who did prescribe it to me, was an HIV specialist.  This meant I had to go to an HIV clinic every month for a check in and bloodwork....not very fun (but good for me to confront my own stigma around HIV). Its just not an ideal place for an HIV negative female to receive primary fact, the internal paperwork they used to order my monthly blood work didn't have a code to order an HIV test.  Why would it?  Its an HIV clinic...where people who are HIV positve receive specialized care. But still, there I was, month after month, telling the lab professional that, YES, I was there to get an HIV test among other things, NO, you're not reading that wrong. 

If all goes well, I'll be ovulating next week...maybe we'll try without the PrEP...maybe not. 


Anonymous said...

Hey Poprock.
Am in the same boat as you. ovulating this weekend and thinking we should just try natural conception. have tried iui once and did not like the experience at all. I am however worried about getting infected even though he has been undetectable for over a year now. what do you think I should do. p/s truvada isn't an option for me as its not available where I stay and our doctor insists on trying iui again.he says people still get infected even when viral load is undetectable. so confused but really want a baby, sooner rather than later.

Anonymous said...

I am the negative partner in my marriage and my husband is and has been undetectable for 16 years. He is tested every 3-6 months and I decided to get tested twice a year. We have sex using harm reduction (withdrawal method) regularly and have conceived 3 times safely. One pregnancy ended in miscarriage, but we have 2 perfectly healthy children. I personally believe the Swiss study is very accurate and relied heavily on it when deciding on PreP. Still holding out hope for perhaps a gentle drug in a vaginal ring form, if I used anything it would be that.

Riley said...

Have you ever had hpv or an abnormal pap? please help I want to concieve naturally but there is not many studies that prove if hpv increases the risk of hiv infection. My spouses viral load has been undetectible for many yrs