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HIV/AIDS Glossary

Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)

Short-term treatment started as soon as possible after high-risk exposure to an infectious agent, such as HIV, hepatitis B virus (HBV), or hepatitis C virus (HCV). The purpose of post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is to reduce the risk of infection. An example of a high-risk exposure is exposure to an infectious agent as the result of unprotected sex.

Related Term(s): Non-Occupational Post-Exposure Prophylaxis, Occupational Post-Exposure Prophylaxis, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis

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