Antiretrovirals and The Introduction of Truvada
HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus) is a serious disease that has massive potential to destroy lives and has posed a threat to public health for decades. It took many years for doctors and scientists to discover effective treatments for the illness, and in the meantime, HIV caused immense human suffering. Truvada is one such treatment, and while it has been promoted as a safe way to both treat and prevent HIV, the truth is that it should never have been approved in the first place. Truvada is a dangerous drug that can cause debilitating injury and illness. If you or a loved one has suffered after taking Truvada, you deserve to see justice served and you may be entitled to financial compensation.
HIV works by destroying T-cells, which are vital components of your body’s immune system. When HIV attacks a T-cell, it uses that cell to make more HIV which then travels throughout the body, attacking more cells and creating more virus.
Antiretroviral drugs are essential in the fight against HIV/AIDS. They work to prevent retroviruses like HIV from replicating, thus slowing the progression of the illness. It sounds relatively simple but creating a safe and effective retroviral therapy has not proven to be an easy task. The first HIV drug, AZT, was approved in 1987 but caused devastating, toxic side effects and even death.
In the mid-90’s, scientists discovered that a combination of at least three retroviral drugs could be effective in combating HIV/AIDS. The combination was known as Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Therapy (HAART), but while effective, this treatment still caused serious side effects.
Truvada hit the market in 2004 as an approved drug to drastically reduce viral loads in those infected with HIV. The introduction of drugs like Truvada meant that HIV patients no longer needed to take many pills daily and HIV was no longer seen as an automatic death sentence. In 2012, Truvada was also approved as a preventative treatment for those at high risk for contracting HIV. Truvada was viewed as groundbreaking and a potential miracle treatment because of its effectiveness at managing and preventing HIV primarily due to its use of TDF (Tenofovir Disoproxil Fumarate).
TDF and TAF: What is the Difference?
TDF drugs like Truvada block HIV from replicating and multiplying, thus reducing the amount of HIV in the bloodstream. Tenofovir Alafenamide Fumarate (TAF) drugs work similarly and are also highly effective but are absorbed much more quickly by the body and can, therefore be given in smaller, safer doses. Many patients who were prescribed TDF drugs like Truvada would have been better off had they been prescribed TAF drugs instead. Both drugs slow the progression of HIV, but TAF drugs limit the impact and potential danger posed to the body.