Tenofovir DF plus lamivudine or emtricitabine for nonoccupational postexposure prophylaxis (NPEP) in a Boston Community Health Center

J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2008 Apr 1;47(4):494-9. doi: 10.1097/QAI.0b013e318162afcb.


Background: Nonoccupational postexposure prophylaxis (NPEP) has been used to decrease HIV transmission after high-risk exposures. However, suboptimal adherence in completing the recommended 28-day course has resulted in prophylaxis failures. Fenway Community Health, the largest center caring for HIV-infected and high-risk men who have sex with men (MSM) in New England, began an NPEP program in 1997, initially using zidovudine-based regimens.

Methods: Two phase 4 studies, using tenofovir DF regimens combined with either lamivudine or emtricitabine, were conducted. This paper evaluates the experience of those who used tenofovir-based NPEP regimens, comparing the subjects to historical controls who used zidovudine-containing regimens.

Results: Between May 2004 and March 2005, 44 individuals who presented after high-risk sexual exposure were prescribed tenofovir DF/lamivudine for NPEP. Between March 2005 and March 2006, 68 individuals with 72 high-risk experiences received tenofovir DF/emtricitabine, and were compared to122 historical controls who were prescribed 126 courses of zidovudine plus lamivudine between January 2000 and May 2004. Seventy-two percent of those who took tenofovir DF and emtricitabine, and 87.5% of the participants who took tenofovir DF and lamivudine, for NPEP completed their regimens as prescribed, whereas only 42.1% of those who took zidovudine plus lamivudine did so (P < 0.0001). Participants who took tenofovir DF-containing regimens were more likely to report diarrhea or abdominal discomfort; patients who took zidovudine-containing regimens were more likely to report nausea and vomiting, which was often severe enough to lead to product discontinuation.

Conclusions: Tenofovir DF-containing regimens for NPEP are generally well tolerated with high completion rates. Tolerability and adherence compared favorably to zidovudine-containing regimens used previously. Tenofovir DF-containing regimens should be considered for PEP to enhance adherence and regimen completion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenine / analogs & derivatives
  • Adenine / therapeutic use
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Boston
  • Clinical Trials, Phase IV as Topic
  • Community Health Centers / organization & administration
  • Community Health Centers / statistics & numerical data*
  • Deoxycytidine / analogs & derivatives
  • Deoxycytidine / therapeutic use
  • Disease Transmission, Infectious / prevention & control*
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Emtricitabine
  • HIV Infections / prevention & control*
  • HIV Infections / transmission
  • Humans
  • Lamivudine / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organophosphonates / therapeutic use
  • Tenofovir
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • Organophosphonates
  • Deoxycytidine
  • Lamivudine
  • Tenofovir
  • Emtricitabine
  • Adenine