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UAB Study Finds HIV-Prevention Device Safe for Women

New research out of the University of Alabama at Birmingham has found an HIV prevention method for women is safe.  The early phase one trial tested out new intravaginal rings carrying two anti-HIV drugs.  Women who used the rings for a month found them acceptable and one of the drugs was detected later.  Unfortunately, the other wasn’t.  But Craig Hoesley, a doctor and professor of medicine who oversaw the trial, said the results were encouraging.  He says other HIV prevention methods like condoms are useful. 

Dr. Craig Hoesley: “But the one thing about condoms is that it requires a male to be willing to use it.  And in many parts of the world, women can’t really negotiate that.  You know it’s not female-controlled.  It’s up to their male partner to use the condom and that’s not guaranteed.  So this would be a method that would be female-controlled and could potentially allow the women to take ownership of their HIV prevention strategies.”

Hoesley says the ring would allow women to take ownership of their HIV-prevention strategies.  34 million people worldwide are living with HIV.  And half of them are women, according to the study.

Jeremy Loeb is a reporter and former APR host of Morning Edition. He joined the station in December of 2013 and stayed with us until November 2014.
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