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Treatment following HIV risk (PEPSE)


PEPSE (post exposure prophylaxis for HIV following sexual exposure) may significantly reduce your risk of being infected with HIV after high risk sexual exposure.

For example, if you have had unprotected sex or a condom failure with someone:
– who is known to be HIV positive
– at high risk of being HIV positive
– or you have been sexually assaulted

  • You should seek advice regarding PEPSE as soon as possible and certainly within 72 hours.
  • PEPSE is available form the Wolverton Centre during our clinic opening hours Monday to Friday (see clinic times) or from A&E at Kingston Hospital during evenings and weekends.  Outside of Kingston, PEPSE is obtainable form any specialised Sexual Health or GUM clinic or any A&E department.
  • Print this sheet off and take with you –  this will help reception know what you are requesting
  • When you attend the clinic/A&E the doctor will take some details from you to assess your risk and prescribe PEPSE according to nationally agreed guidelines.
  • You will need a baseline HIV test and routine blood tests to check your general health.
  • You will also be checked for hepatitis B and offered Hepatitis B vaccine.
  • If you are a woman you may need emergency contraception.
  • PEPSE consists of 4 weeks therapy with antiretroviral medication or HAART.
  • Treatment consists of 3 different antiretroviral medications taken as follows:
    • TRUVADA one tablet once daily
    • RALTEGRAVIR 400mg twice daily
  • You need to start treatment as soon as possible and within 72 hours.
  • You need to complete the 4 week course.
  • You will be followed up weekly at the Wolverton to ensure you don’t experience any side effects.
  • You will need a STI screen 2 weeks later.
  • You may need to complete a course of hepatitis B vaccines (injections at 0, 1, and 3 weeks).
  • You will need a final HIV test 3 months after completing PEPSE to ensure that it has worked and you remain HIV negative.
  • It is important to continue to use condoms until you have received this final HIV test result.

Further Information

Terrence Higgins Trust PEP information page

Complete our questionnaire

More information from the British Association for Sexual Health & HIV