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Adaora Adimora, MD, MPH is Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Board certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, she is a physician epidemiologist with more than 20 years of clinical experience in the treatment of patients with HIV disease. She studies the epidemiology of HIV and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Her work has characterized the epidemiology of heterosexual HIV transmission among African-Americans, highlighted the role of sexual network patterns in the spread of HIV, and underscored the importance of macroeconomic and social forces in racial disparities in the US HIV epidemic.

She was selected by The Root as one 100 African-American leaders “who are making extraordinary contributions.” She serves as Chair of the HIV Medical Association, chairs the NIH HIV Prevention Trials Network’s Women at Risk Committee, and is a member of the Women’s Research Initiative on HIV/AIDS and the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS.

What is the name of some medication that will decrease the viral load?

There are many different medicines – more than 20 at this point. Here are the generic names of some: Tenofovir, Abacavir, Emtricitabine, Raltegravir, Dolutegravir. You can find out more on the NIH website. 

Can a man have anal sex with his wife and contract HIV?

Yes, if she has HIV.

Although you say HIV can become undetectable, that doesn’t mean a person no longer has it, right? Is there still a chance someone could still contract the virus from someone in that situation?

People who have undetectable viral loads in their blood are very, very unlikely to give the virus to someone else through sex.

Doctor, If a male is with a woman who is undetectable, should he take Travada or other preventive medications?

This is controversial. If the woman’s virus is consistently undetectable, he should not need to use PrEP. But some people might want to use PrEP to further decrease their risk of getting HIV. This is something the person should discuss with his doctor or other health care provider.

PHOTO: Dr. Adimora

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