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Tenofovir proves an effective and safe HIV treatment during pregnancy
New scientific research published in the Public Library of Science has concluded that HIV drug tenofovir is safe to use during pregnancy.
The international team led by Diana Gibb from the MRC Clinical Trials Unit in London assessed the pregnancy outcomes of HIV-infected women from Uganda and Zimbabwe.
They found that the drug does not adversely affect pregnancy outcomes and does not increase the risk of birth defects, kidney problems or growth abnormalities in infants.
"Our findings suggest tenofovir-containing antiretroviral therapy is a reasonable choice in pregnancy and that tenofovir pre-exposure prophylaxis is also reasonable for women who are at high risk of seroconverting during pregnancy," the researchers stated.
The team observed that babies exposed to the drug had a one-year mortality rate of five per cent, similar to the standard two per cent death rate in the region, but much lower than that seen in those born to HIV-infected mothers who did not receive treatment.
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