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PLoS One. 2015 Nov 11;10(11):e0142534. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0142534. eCollection 2015.

Adherence to Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) and Incidence of HIV Seroconversion in a Major North American Cohort.

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Clinique médicale l'Actuel, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.



There is limited evidence on the efficacy of post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) for sexual exposures. We sought to determine the factors associated with adherence to treatment and describe the incidence of PEP failures in a Montreal clinic.


We prospectively assessed all patients consulting for PEP following sexual exposures from October 2000 to July 2014. Patients were followed at 4 and 16 weeks after starting PEP. Treatment adherence was determined by self-report at week 4. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the factors predicting adherence to treatment.


3547 PEP consults were included. Patients were mainly male (92%), MSM (83%) and sought PEP for anal intercourse (72%). Seventy-eight percent (n = 2772) of patients received a prescription for PEP, consisting of Tenofovir/Emtracitabine (TVD) + Lopinavir/Ritonavir (LPV) in 74% of cases, followed by Zidovudine/Lamivudine (CBV) + LPV (10%) and TVD + Raltegravir (RAL) (8%). Seventy percent of patients were adherent to treatment. Compared to TVD+LPV, patients taking CBV+LPV were less likely to adhere to treatment (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.44-0.75), while no difference was observed for patients taking TVD+RAL (OR 1.15, 95% CI 0.83-1.59). First-time PEP consults, older and male patients were also more adherent to treatment. Ten treated patients seroconverted (0.37%) during the study period, yet only 1 case can be attributed to PEP failure (failure rate = 0.04%).


PEP regimen was associated with treatment adherence. Patients were more likely to be adherent to TVD-based regimens. Ten patients seroconverted after taking PEP; however, only 1 case was a PEP failure as the remaining patients continued to engage in high-risk behavior during follow-up. One month PEP is an effective preventive measure to avoid HIV infection.

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